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Italy - Serie A
March 4, 2012
• Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milano
Referee: D. Celi
• Attendance: 47000
D. Forlán 71'
D. Milito 79'
A. Gómez 19'
M. Izco 38'
Thank you for joining us here at Goal.com for our LIVE commentary on tonight's game. Remember to stick with us for all the post-match news and analysis including match report and player ratings. My name is Tom Webber and it has been a pleasure to guide you through tonight's action.
Ranieri may well hold onto his job for the time being after Catania seemed to throw it all away. They played so well in the first half but allowed Inter far too much space in the second 45 which ultimately cost them the three points.
It is all over at San Siro and Inter end their five-match losing streak with a comeback draw against Catania. Gomez and Izco put the visitors ahead but the Nerazzurri drew level in the second half thanks to goals from Forlan and Milito.
90' + 3'
.. He fires it into the wall but it goes out for a corner. He delivers the ball and Ebagua heads it behind for yet another corner. Motta heads it away and the whistle goes for full time.
90' + 2'
Free kick for Inter here in a dangerous area, 35 metres from goal in a central position. What can Sneijder do here? ...
90' + 1'
THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE WINNER!! Obi crosses the ball into Pazzini whose control is not great. He manages to stab the ball at goal but Carrizo saves well with his legs. That really should have been the game over.
Almiron again is the driving force behind the Catania break as he surges forwards and slips a pass to Ebagua. The Nigerian shoots from a difficult angle but his effort has plenty of pace. Julio Cesar won't be beaten there though and he saves comfortably.
Pazzini is incensed! The ball in from the right is cleared away by Spolli and Inter think they have a corner. However, the referee has different ideas and awards a goal kick. Time is running out for Inter to find a winner after Catania have gone off the boil.
Seymour wins a corner for Catania as he fails to find space to get a cross in and is closed down by two Inter defenders. The ball is sent in but the referee spots an infringement and awards the hosts a free kick.
HOW DID HE MISS IT!! Lodi finds Seymour in acres of space in the area. He takes a touch to kill the ball and tries to bend his shot in at the far post. It is far too tame and Julio Cesar catches the ball easily. Inter counter and win a corner through Milito but nothing comes of it.
You have to credit Inter with a great fightback here. They looked out of it but Ranieri's substitutions have helped draw the game level. With the momentum behind them now they look like they could find a winner.
Catania respond to the equaliser with a rare foray forward this half. Motta has the ball on the right and takes a shot on goal. It flies high and wide of the goal without testing Julio Cesar.
Assist Diego Forlán
Goal Diego Milito
GOOOOOOOOAAAAAALLLL!! THEY'VE PULLED IT BACK!! Obi wins the ball back for Inter in the final third and Forlan spots Milito in space on the right hand side of the box. He takes one touch and rifles a shot into the far corner. A truly emphatic finish. Can they find a winner now?
Milito drops into space between the lines once again as Sneijder fires a crisp pass to him. He cannot find space for the shot and he fires straight into a mass of Catania bodies. They are finding it a lot harder to contain the Nerazzurri now.
Finally there is some urgency in Inter's play. It is now they who seem to have all the time they like on the ball and they almost find another. Sneijder clips a lovely pass into Pazzini who is alone in the area but the striker was just offside.
Yellow Card Wesley Sneijder
The momentum is very much with the Nerazzuri now! Catania try to keep the ball but they lose possession and Inter break. Forlan drives to the byeline and tries to stand a cross up at the back post but it goes too deep for Nagatomo who is running in at the back post.
Assist Wesley Sneijder
Goal Diego Forlán
GOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAALLLLLLL!!! FORLAN!! He's had a tough time tonight but he finally gets Inter a goal. He brings the ball down well on the left and runs inside. He cuts back onto his left foot, easily passing Motta before firing into the back of the net. Carrizo got a touch on the ball but the sheer power of the strike took it into the goal.
Catania are still committing a large amount of players to their counterattacks. It looks like Ebagua has been brought on to try and hold up the play in the Inter half.
Gustavo Rubén Bergessio
The introduction of Sneijder has certainly given Inter a great deal more creativity in midfield. His distribution has been great but the Nerazzurri are just finding it difficult to create a goal scoring opportunity. They have just over 20 minutes to find a way back into this game.
SAMUEEEELLLL!!! He has headed the ball straight at Carrizo! Sneijder's corner is fantastic and Samuel finds space in the area and gets his head on the ball. His effort falls straight at the feet of Carrizo who gathers the ball easily.
Forlan is having a difficult time out on the left. His delivery has been poor and he has hardly put a decent cross in all game.
I appreciate all your comments on Twitter. Adim Ugochuckwu also believes Ranieri will face the chop and that Milan will go on to win the league after extending the gap at the top this weekend.
MOTTA HEADS JUST WIDE!! Catania are in the ascendancy here. They are just waltzing through Inter at will. The ball goes into the box and Motta gets his head on it but he fails to get enough purchase on the ball as it shaves the post.
Whistles are ringing out around San Siro again. Julio Cesar vacates his goal once more and almost gifts Catania another chance to score a third. There is no urgency from Inter and they seem static in defence. At the other end though Legrottaglie has been an absolute rock.
CATANIA GO CLOSE AGAIN!! Two attempts in one minute almost see the visitors extend their lead. Firstly, Barrientos threaded a great pass to Gomez but Julio Cesar beat the striker to the ball. From his clearance Bergessio collected the ball and tried to loop an effort over the keeper but it did not have enough dip and sailed over the bar too.
GREAT SAVE!! Sneijder sends in a beautiful cross from the dead ball and Milito rises highest. He heads the ball straight at Carrizo but the referee's assistant has raised his flag anyway so it would not have stood anyway.
When Catania are on the ball they seem to have so much space and time. Barrientos tries to wriggle away from Nagatomo and tries an audacious heel pass to Gomez but it is intercepted. The Sicilians are able to hold the ball so comfortably, Inter need to step it up.
Catania break again and Gomez carries the ball forward. He reaches the top of the box and opts for a shot as his options are limited. The Argentine slices across the ball and his attempt is always bending away from goal.
This looks a bit better from Inter. Milito finds space between the lines and lays the ball to Pazzini. He passes to Sneijder who looks to play in Milito over the top but Carrizo comes out to claim the pass.
Pazzini goes down in the area once again under challenge from Legrottaglie. There was no way a penalty would be awarded for that as the striker was nowhere near the ball.
Here we go! The second half is underway. Ranieri has 45 minutes to rescue his job at San Siro. Sneijder has come on in place of Faraoni.
The restart is seconds away and @loneley has added his voice to the previous point, suggesting that Ranieri is sure to face the axe after the match.
So the second half is just moments away and it looks like Sneijder is going to enter the fray. Could it be too little too late though? Thanks to @closer319 who told me on Twitter: "Surely the Tinkerman's reign is over, Andre Villas-Boas to Inter hopefully."
The whistle goes and it is half time at San Siro. The Inter fans are irate at the performance of their team and they have every right to be. What do you make of their first-half performance? Let me know via twitter @thwebber and I will return for the second half in 15 minutes.
Lucio finds Forlan wide on the left who puts another ball into the box but this time it is too deep. The ball rolls out for the throw and it looks like Catania will hang on to their two-goal advantage into the break.
That sums up this disjointed performance from the Nerazzurri. Milito plays a ball to Cambiasso at the top of the box. The midfielder dummies it and looks for a return pass. However, Pazzini is idle and just is not on the same wavelength.
What must Ranieri be thinking now? His team have played at such a slow tempo that shows little creativity and find themselves two goals behind to Vicenzo Montella's men. There will surely be some stern words at half time but can they get back into this?
Assist Giovanni Marchese
Goal Mariano Julio Izco
THEY HAVE SCORED NOW!! Catania are two to the good! It looked as though Marchese was offside when he received the ball on the left but the flag stayed down and he centred the ball for Izco. He failed to make a proper connection but fortunately the ball rolls into the back of the open net!
HE SHOULD HAVE SCORED!! Another great counter from Catania with Almiron providing the dynamism in mifield. He spots Barrientos' darting run into the box and plays a lovely ball with the outside of his boot. Barrientos controls the ball with his back to goal but it just gets away from him on the turn allowing Julio Cesar to gather.
Yellow Card Mariano Julio Izco
Will Claudio Ranieri be the second big managerial casualty of the weekend after Andre Villas-Boas was sacked as Chelsea manager? Let me know your thoughts via Twitter @thwebber.
They come forward and Milito pokes the ball into Pazzini at the top of the box. The striker spins and falls to the ground but the referee is unmoved. Legrottaglie made minimal contact but Pazzini was looking for the penalty and made a meal of it.
Catania look to halt the momentum by playing the ball across the ball easily. Whistles are ringing around San Siro as Inter cannot get anywhere near the ball. The crowd are getting very impatient and Inter eventually win the ball back and look to counter.
A decent spell of pressure here for Inter but they cannot seem to beat Legrottaglie. The former Juventus defender is dealing with everything that is coming into the box as Inter struggle to find a way through.
Over the bar! Nagatomo drifts in from wide on the right and fires a left-footed shot at goal. It sails well over the bar and Carrizo does not looked worried by it at all. They are starting to come into the game a bit more now.
It's proving fruitless in attack for Inter. Pazzini and Milito are not clicking and Forlan seems wasted wide on the left. Another long ball runs out of play with neither attacker able to get on the end of it.
Milito tries an identical move to Gomez's on the goal as he cuts onto his right and looks for Pazzini at the back post. However, the Catania defenders double up and block the avenue for Milito as Spolli gets in the way of the ball.
Great defending from Lucio! The Brazilian does well to turn the ball behind and off the toe of Gomez who could well have added another goal there.
Well I mentioned that Catania looked dangerous on the counter and Inter have found that out first hand. How will they react to going behind once again?
Assist Pablo Barrientos
Goal Alejandro Gómez
GOOOOOOOAAAAALLL!! GOMEZ!! Catania prove deadly on the counter! Gomez picks up the ball on the left corner of the box. He drives in, cuts the ball onto his right to eliminate Nagatomo and bend the ball into the far corner. Terrific goal from the Sicilians.
The Nerazzurri put a couple of crosses into the box but there is no one attacking the ball. Milito and Pazzini look at each other disapprovingly as neither went for the ball.
Legrottaglie takes a huge risk in playing the ball back to Carrizo under intense pressure from Inter. The Argentine keeper maintains a cool head to and deals with the pass by clipping it out wide.
Well it's been a fairly even start to this game. Inter are playing at an extremely slow tempo as they try to build from the back. Catania meanwhile look very dangerous on the counterattack.
Pazzini fails to clear the ball away and almost allows Catania to nip in and steal a goal but Julio Cesar comes out and smothers the ball.
Inter earn a free kick about 35 metres from goal in the centre of the pitch. Palombo steps up to take it and he clears the wall but also the crossbar. It would have had to have been something very special to find the back of the net from there!
Milito earns his side a corner which is delivered by Forlan. It falls at the near post and Almiron dives to head the ball. He clears it behind but it could so easily have gone wrong and ended up in his own net.
.. From a wide angle Lodi attempts to shoot but it goes over the bar. He perhaps would have been better putting that into the box.
Almiron launches a counter for Catania this time. He drives forward and lays the ball to Bergessio who is clattered into by Samuel. The visitors now have a free kick in a dangerous area...
Barrientos looks to take on his compatriot Zanetti but the wiley defender deals with him comfortably and launches a counterattack. He passes down the left flank to Forlan and the Uruguayan cuts inside but fires a wayward shot that is nowhere near testing Carrizo.
Catania are looking tidy on the ball in the early stages. Motta sends the ball into the box and it takes a deflection off an Inter player. Bergessio chases it out wide but they cannot formulate another chance and end up losing possession to a throw in.
Samuel plays a long ball up from the back looking for Pazzini. The striker cannot get near it as the ball is shepherded back to Carrizo.
We are underway at San Siro! Will this be Claudio Ranieri's final 90 minutes in charge of Inter? Let's find out!
The team's are out on the pitch and the match will soon be underway. Forlan may begin the game operating out wide but he could also fill in behind the two strikers as Sneijder normally would.
Inter have failed to score in their last four Serie A matches, all of which ended in defeat. Diego Milito is the only player to have scored for Inter in their last eight matches in all competitions. The Argentine bagged four goals in the 4-4 draw with Palermo over a month ago.
And here is tonight's Cantia line-up: Carrizo; Motta, Legrottaglie, Spolli, Marchese; Izco, Lodi, Almiron; Gomez, Bergessio, Barrientos. Subs: Kosiscki, Seymour, Bellusci, Llama, Ricchiuti, Ebagua, Capuano.
Here is how Ranieri has set his team out tonight: Julio Cesar; Nagatomo, Lucio, Samuel, Zanetti; Faraoni, Palombo, Cambiasso; Forlan; Milito, Pazzini. Subs: Castellazzi, Cordoba, Sneijder, Poli, Obi, Zarate, Juan Jesus.
With Claudio Ranieri under immense pressure, the big news is that 'The Tinkerman' has dropped Wesley Sneijder to the bench for tonight's match. Do you agree with his decision? Send your thoughts to @thwebber on twitter!
The hosts are winless in eight games in all competitions and will be looking for a return to form tonight. However, Catania could pull level with the Nerazzurri should they condemn them to their sixth consecutive defeat.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE commentary on tonight's Serie A clash between Inter and Catania at San Siro. My name is Tom Webber and I will be guiding you through tonight's action.
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