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Serie A

  • December 9, 2012
  • • 19:45
  • • Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, Milano
  • Referee: N. Rizzoli
  • • Attendance: 41000
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Inter - Napoli Preview: Nerazzurri aiming to close the gap at the top

Inter - Napoli Preview: Nerazzurri aiming to close the gap at the top

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With two points separating the sides heading into this clash, the Partenopei will be looking to extend their lead over the Nerazzurri as they aim to challenge Juve for the Scudetto

  PROBABLE LINEUPS
INTER

Handanovic
Ranocchia, Silvestre, Jesus
Zanetti, Gargano, Cambiasso, Nagatomo
Cassano, Palacio
Milito
NAPOLI
FC Lorient
De Sanctis
Gamberini, Cannavaro, Britos
Mesto, Behrami, Inler, Zuniga
Hamsik
Insigne, Cavani

Wesley Sneijder's contract dispute with Inter to rumbles on and while there has been suggestions that the Netherlands international could have been back in contention for a start on Sunday, the official club website revealed that he missed training on Friday due to a calf injury and will not be available.

However, Antonio Cassano, who did not feature from the start in the Nerazzurri's last three games, is expected to play from the beginning after a cameo in Inter's 2-2 draw with Neftchi Baku in the Europa League.

The ever-reliant Walter Samuel is suspended for the hosts which gives Matias Silvestre the opportunity to impress at San Siro on Sunday. Cristian Chivu, Dejan Stankovic, Obi and Gaby Mudingayi are among the other absentees for Inter.

Andrea Ranocchia and Fredy Guarin will have to tread carefully as they are one booking away from a suspension.

Meanwhile, for Napoli, Goran Pandev is rated 50:50 to make the clash which could give young Italian striker Lorenzo Insigne the chance to stake his claim. Marek Hamsik did not train on Friday due to flu but the club are hopeful he will be ready for Sunday.

Salvatore Aronica, Christian Maggio and Blerim Dzemaili also need to be assessed before this weekend's encounter.

  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Inter stopped the rot with a 1-0 victory at Palermo last weekend after going three games without a win in Serie A.
  • After losing their first two home fixtures in the league, the Nerazzurri have went five matches unbeaten at San Siro.
  • The hosts lost last season's encounter at the Giuseppe Meazza 3-0, but previously had eight straight victories against the Partenopei.
  • Napoli are undefeated in their last seven games in all competitions before their 3-1 loss to PSV on Thursday.

  • Goran Pandev (pictured, right), who used to play for Inter, has made 13 appearances against the Nerazzurri and has found the net twice during this time.
  • The Partenopei are five matches undefeated against Inter in all competitions. Though, in one of those games, they did record a draw in 90 minutes before losing on penalties.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
1Samir HandanoviçGoalkeeper
4Javier ZanettiDefender
23Andrea RanocchiaDefender
11Á. PereiraDefender
5Juan JesusDefender
55Yuto NagatomoDefender
13Fredy GuarínMidfielder
5Esteban CambiassoMidfielder
23Walter GarganoMidfielder
22Diego MilitoStriker
99Antonio CassanoStriker
-Luca CastellazziGoalkeeper
27Vid BelecGoalkeeper
6Matías SilvestreDefender
33Ibrahima MbayeDefender
-Simone PasaDefender
10CoutinhoMidfielder
-McDonald MarigaMidfielder
-Marco BenassiMidfielder
-Joseph DuncanMidfielder
-Andrea RomanòMidfielder
8Rodrigo PalacioStriker
-Marko LivajaStriker
26Morgan De SanctisGoalkeeper
5Miguel Angel BritosDefender
-Paolo CannavaroDefender
5Alessandro GamberiniDefender
11Christian MaggioMidfielder
17Marek HamsikMidfielder
18Camilo ZúñigaDefender
85Valon BehramiMidfielder
88Gökhan InlerMidfielder
9Edinson CavaniStriker
24Lorenzo InsigneStriker
15Roberto ColomboGoalkeeper
22Antonio RosatiGoalkeeper
-Gianluca GravaDefender
-Salvatore AronicaDefender
3Andrea DossenaDefender
14Hugo CampagnaroDefender
17Federico FernándezDefender
4Marco DonadelMidfielder
16Giandomenico MestoMidfielder
20Blerim DzemailiMidfielder
9Edu VargasStriker
19Goran PandevStriker
Players to Watch
Antonio Cassano
Antonio Cassano
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 99
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Italy international has the craft and ingenuity to create a chance out of nothing and it has been no surprise really to see the Nerazzurri struggle with his absence from the side in the past three games. May not quite be at full fitness, but is an invaluable member to have around and has a great partnership with Diego Milito.
Edinson Cavani
Edinson Cavani
Position: Striker
Squad Number: 9
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The in-form attacker will strike fear into most Serie A defences with the mention of his name, The Uruguay international has been in stunning form, netting eight times in his last five games in all competitions, and may well fancy his chances against a shaky Inter defence who will miss the presence of Walter Samuel at the back.
Prediction
At San Siro, Inter have had the upperhand in recent years against the Partenopei, but given the form of the visitors and Edinson Cavani's in particular, Andrea Stramaccioni's Nerazzurri can either silence the critics or be overwhelmed by Napoli. It wouldn't be in the realms of fantasy to suggest that the hosts find themselves at the end of a defeat.
Editor's Prediction
Inter 1
Napoli 2

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