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Italy - Coppa Italia
January 25, 2012
• Stadio San Paolo, Napoli
Referee: D. Celi
• Attendance: 27265
E. Cavani 50', 90'+
And that's that as far as this Coppa Italia quarter-final is concerned, as Napoli will now play Siena in the last four after ending Inter's chances of retaining their cup crown, not to mention their eight-game winning run! Stay with Goal.com for more breaking coverage of tonight's action, including the Clasico! I'm Livio Caferoglu and I wish you all a pleasant evening. Buonanotte!
90' + 3'
Goal Edinson Cavani
90' + 3'
WHAT A GOAL TO PUT NAPOLI IN THE SEMIS!!!! A quite sensational counterattacking goal, as Pandev plays through Cavani, who proceeds to twist and turn past Ranocchia and Castellazzi and tap into an empty net! 2-0 Napoli and game over.
90' + 2'
Napoli break once more from Sneijder's failed corner, but Pandev cannot get Cavani's pass under control in the box! Straight after, the Macedonian is through once more, but is ushered away by Samuel!
Three minutes of injury time will be played out, as Inter win a corner courtesy of some uncertain goalkeeping from De Sanctis!
Inter's increasingly overriding possession percentage will probably count for nothing as Napoli are closing out a place in the last four.. AND OUT OF NOWHERE subsitute Dzemaili smasehs a fine attempt at goal, and forces Castellazzi to parry the ball away for a corner!
WONDERFUL GOALKEEPING!! A superb double save from De Sanctis, as Maicon's lob-cum-shot forces the 'keeper to fingertip the effort away from goal, but neither Milito or Cambiasso can net the rebound!
Yellow Card W. Gargano
The tackles are flying in thick and fast, as Napoli are playing 10 men behind the ball to try and see out the match, while Inter try to throw the kitchen sink at them!
Now Maicon suddenly wakes up and tries his utmost to break down a stubborn Neapolitan backline, but Cannavaro blasts the ball away! A great ending to this nail-biting cup encounter.
Despite Sneijder's impressive play in and around the box, his set-pieces have been generally poor, as another free kick attempt bites the dust.
FRANTIC STUFF HERE IN NAPLES! Two more chances to comment on, as another long ball evades Samuel and Ranocchia, but not Gargano, who tries to wriggle his way past Castellazzi, but the goalkeeper smothers the ball gratefully. Straight after, Sneijder tried to curl a deft attempt past De Sanctis, but it whistled just wide of the post!
Zarate almost makes an impact from the offset, as he finds himself down the left flank, despite Campagnaro falling down from a supposed elbow in the face, but cannot quite find the right ball for a team-mate in the box.
Napoli try to counter on Inter's recent possession play through Inler, but the Swiss midfielder shoots well over the bar.
Milito is again frustrated in his calls for a penalty, as Cannavaro seemed to have brought him down en route to goal, but to no avail. Meanwhile Zarate is now on the field of play!
OOOH! The second goal for Napoli appeared to have been in touching distance, as Pandev looked to have been clear in the box courtesy of a long ball into the box once more, but Samuel is on hand to clear the danger.
Signs of improvement are finally being shown by Inter, as Maicon finds Milito down the right, but his strike is easily caught by De Sanctis!
Inter are about to throw on an extra striker, as Cambiasso is the latest to test his attacking instincts out, but he cannot quite latch onto a through ball in the box!
Pandev almost finds himself in the clear via a straight ball pumped forward, but Julio Cesar aptly deals with the situation. Moments later, Napoli almost score the perfect counterattacking goal, as Gargano's cross-field pass finds Cavani, who lays off to Pandev, but the substitute shoots high and wide!
A very quiet five minutes, as the tempo is brought right down. BUT SUDDENLY ALVAREZ IS IN AND AWAY... and blows a great chance! Sneijder slips him through, with Zuniga the guilty party, but the Argentine can't beat De Sanctis from three yards out!
Yellow Card Diego Milito
Moments before Pandev's introduction, Cavani had made a superb run and looked to have found himself through on goal, but Zanetti managed to bust a gut and avert the danger just in time!
Wouldn't Pandev like to put one past his parent club? The Macedonian forward comes on in place of Lavezzi, who despite a lively start has sadly seen his impact fizzle out.
THAT'S MORE LIKE IT!! Sneijder finds the ball at his feet on the outskirts of the box, and unleashes a sizzling strike which flies just over the bar with De Sanctis beaten!
Napoli hit back, but once again Ranocchia, arguably Inter's best player, deals with Cavani in a professional manner and wins a free kick in the process!
Yellow Card Christian Maggio
Maggio is becoming a prominent player in this match, but for all the wrong reasons as he cynically trips Sneijder near the D. Will the Dutchman profit from the set-piece? He doesn't.. BUT WHAT A GOOD ATTEMPT! He powers an arrow-like attempt at De Sanctis, but the shot stopper does well to divert the ball away!
ANOTHER PENALTY SHOUT!! But it ends up a yellow card for Milito, who is raging at the referee's decision, despite appearing to be felled by Maggio in the box following Alvarez's inch-perfect lob through pass.
Maicon is far too lackadasical in his approach so far. He is presented with a glorious opportunity to whip the ball into the box, but he is half-heartedly stopped by Zuniga!
All Napoli at the moment, as Sneijder again flatters to deceive in the final third, courtesy of more fine ball-winning from Maggio. However, the ball returns to Inter as Ranocchia wins it back once more!
The onus is now on Inter to find the inspiration for an equaliser, but it may play into Napoli's hands, as they will happily play on the counterattack for the remaining 40 minutes.
Penalty Goal Edinson Cavani
GOLACCIOOOOOOOO!! Cavani gets back up to dispatch the penalty with aplomb, as Castellazzi goes the wrong way. If reports are to be believed about Motta playing his last game, then he has given Inter a poor parting gift! A very dysfunctional performance so far.
PENALTY TO NAPOLI!!! Lavezzi out of nowhere bursts into life on the edge of the box, before playing the ball to Cavani. The striker turns away from Motta superbly, but the Italo-Brazilian midfielder brings him down before he shoots!
OOOH! Motta misses the ball totally in the box, as any touch on the end of the corner would surely have been the opening goal in this match! Good start from Inter.
Alvarez tries to make an instant impact, as he plays a couple of quick one-twos with team-mates! Meanwhile, Milito wins a corner for Inter.
And the second half is underway at the San Paolo!
The players are now coming out onto the pitch for the second half, but not before a shot of Claudio Ranieri is shown, seemingly berating his team for a below-par first half showing!
firehead22 on Twitter says: Napoli are closing down the Inter players well and Milito needs support. Sneijder needs to find some space and put Milito through on goal - a very truthful assessment! Thanks for your views.
Half time sees the scoreline remain goalless! Join me in 15 minutes for more uninterrupted LIVE commentary of the second period!
Just the one minute of injury time added on in this encouraging first half at the San Paolo, as Maggio is bundled down by Obi to win a free kick on the touchline.
Hamsik tries to rifle in a shot from distance, but his attempt is speculative and is dragged well wide of the target. Meanwhile, Milito robs Zuniga in the Napoli half and cuts the ball back to Obi, but the Nigerian's shot goes just over the bar!
Sneijder's a very lucky boy as he trips Maggio deep in the Napoli half but only gets a warning from the referee, which in some eyes could be seen as a yellow card offence!
CLOSE FROM NAPOLI!!! Two quick-fire attempts at goal sees Maggio firstly burst down the right flank and into the box, but his drilled cross is deflected into the hands of Castellazzi, while again he plays a ball into the area but it's Aronica of all people who fires a shot at the Nerazzurri goalkeeper!
Yellow Card Wesley Sneijder
Petulance from Sneijder, as despite the whistle for offside being blown several moments earlier, he shoots the ball off the field out of frustration of play and receives a yellow card!
It's been all Napoli of late, but Ranocchia has put in a valiant shift at the back to deny the Partenopei from scoring! Again he manages to read a lobbed pass in the box with ease.
PENALTY CALL? Initally it looked to have been a clear red card and a spotkick for Napoli, as Chivu seemed to have deliberately barged Cavani in the box, but subsequent replays show the Uruguayan may have gone down too easily.
Lovely footwork by Zuniga down the right-hand side once more, as he effortlessly drifts into the box, but his strike from a tight angle is well stopped by Castellazzi!
Obi looks to have left Cannavaro for dead with a deft turn to run at goal, but he slips and allows Napoli to break back.. which ends fruitless again!
First handbags moment of the game sees Gargano vent his fury at Sneijder, who appears to have gone studs-first into the Uruguayan's shin. The replays probably made the incident appear worse, but dangerous nevertheless!
Lavezzi again proves to be a handful as Motta illegally stops him in his tracks.. and almost gets onto the end of Maggio's low cross but Samuel bravely smothers the ball out for a goal kick.
Hamsik again tries to play through his team-mates, but Ranocchia reads the situation calmly and leaves the ball for Julio Cesar to collect.
Yellow Card Cristian Chivu
Sadly for Napoli, it proves to be a wasted opportunity as it is Inler who strikes the free kick, but his curling ball cannot be glanced on by Zuniga, and the move breaks down.
First yellow card of the game sees Chivu cynically pull back an onrushing Lavezzi. Inler and Hamsik stand over the set piece...
Zanetti and Maicon work the ball together near the touchline to earn a corner, which is nearly headed in by Samuel! However, the defender's attempt is well held by De Sanctis.
Time for a brief respite, despite Chivu's attempt to switch the tempo up once more, but his deep pass into Milito is overhit. Napoli suddenly hit back through Inler, but the Swiss midfielder drags his shot wide.
Lavezzi has been arguably the brightest player in the match so far as he wins a free kick dead central to goal for Gargano to strike.. AND HE COMES AWFULLY CLOSE!! Castellazzi had simply ball-watched!
The game seems to have exploded into life as now Sneijder rifles a low attempt at De Sanctis from distance, but the Dutchman's shot is comfortably dealt with by the goalkeeper.
INCREDIBILE!!!! Maggio has his head in his hands as Hamsik's diagonal pass finds the wingback all on his own in the box with Castellazzi to beat, but he balloons his effort over the bar!
Best move of the game so far, as Lavezzi breaks down the right wing and puts in a delicate cross for Hamsik to profit from, but his header goes high and wide!
Obi claims to be brought down in the Napoli area by Maggio after Motta plays through a pinpoint long pass from midfield, but the referee dismisses the Nigerian's appeals as De Sanctis eventually collects the ball!
Now Lavezzi is penalised for a handball offence inside the Nerazzurri danger zone, but the ball did not appear to hit the Argentine!
Sneijder appeals for handball on the edge of the box, as the ball bounces directly in front of Cannavaro, but he manages to bring the ball down under control, albeit with the aid of an arm possibly!
Zuniga is ruled offside, as Inler's pass sees him marginally ahead of Inter's line of defence down the flank. A shame, as it seemed all too predictable - very unlike Napoli who are reknown for their stylish football.
It's Inter's turn to play the ball around the pitch and begin to develop a rhythm, but Maicon's long pass is easily gathered by De Sanctis.
Hamsik does superbly well to wriggle his way through the middle of the park and almost initiates an attack as the ball then reaches Gargano, but his angled pass is well headed out by Ranocchia.
The hosts look the better team so far, as Inter are struggling to retain the ball, in contrast to Napoli's crisp passing style and swift movement around the pitch, but with 87 minutes remaining, anything can happen!
Maicon boots forward a floated ball from his own half into Milito, who looks to dash past the last man at the back, but Cannavaro does well to anticipate the pass!
Napoli begin with two throws, as Christian Maggio prepares to launch the ball into the box... but to no avail. Now it's Cristian Chivu's turn for the visitors.
Referee Domenico Celi kicks the match off, with Napoli going from left to right and Inter vice-versa!
The players and officials flood out onto the pitch! It's no sell-out by any means, but the two curvas at either end of the ground are fairly full.
Again you find me on the same night as a Clasico! Personally I think you guys should stick with me here. I'm chomping at the bit to see these two sides lock horns - despite their contrasting form, statistics go out of the window in the cup!
And last but not least, Inter: Castellazzi; Maicon, Ranocchia, Samuel, Chivu; Zanetti, Thiago Motta, Cambiasso, Obi; Sneijder, Milito. Subs: Julio Cesar, Cordoba, Faraoni, Alvarez, Poli, Zarate, Castaignos.
First up, here's how Napoli will look: De Sanctis; Campagnaro, Cannavaro, Aronica; Maggio, Gargano, Inler, Zuniga; Hamsik, Lavezzi; Cavani. Subs: Rosati, Dossena, Vargas, Dzemaili, Fernandez, Pandev, Britos.
I'm Livio Caferoglu and I'll be guiding you through all the action, minute-by-minute! As ever, you can follow the match with me on Twitter via @livmc. Be sure to tweet me your thoughts on the game and the best ones will be posted!
Ciao and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE coverage of the massive Coppa Italia quarter-final clash between Napoli and Inter at the San Paolo! It promises to be a hugely enthralling bout between the two Italian footballing heavyweights, with a place in the semis at stake! Team news will be out shortly.
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