Inter travel to Udinese on Sunday in a bid to keep the pressure on Serie A leaders Juventus and end their run of three games without a win.
Antonio Conte’s side have fallen three points behind Juve at the league summit after slumping to three draws on the bounce, and have in-form Lazio breathing down their necks in third place.
With Juventus kicking off early on Sunday, that lead at the top could have extended to six points by the start at the Stadio Friuli, meaning a win for Inter at 14th placed Udinese is crucial in order to kickstart some momentum in their Serie A title challenge.
The hosts have lost their last two, but find themselves a comfortable nine points clear of the drop zone.
Where to Watch on TV
|When Is Kick Off?||Sunday 2 February|
|What Time Is Kick Off?||19:45 (GMT)|
|Where Is It Being Played?||Stadio Friuli|
|TV Channel / Live Stream?||Sky Sport Uno|
|Referee?||Marco Di Bello|
Antonio Candreva is available for Inter after returning from suspension, but is expected to start on the bench with Ashley Young given the nod – the former Manchester United man registering an assist in his Serie A debut against Cagliari.
Lautaro Martinez is suspended after his sending off in that match, and will also miss the Milan derby next Sunday, while M
New signings Victor Moses and Christian Eriksen both came off the bench in midweek against Fiorentina in the Coppa Italia and are in contention to make their full debuts, although they are expected to start as substitutes once more.
Udinese will be without long term absentee Samir, who remains sidelined until March with a meniscal injury.
|Udinese||Musso; Nuytinck, Troost-Ekong, Becao; Sema, Fofana, Mandragora, Paul, Larsen; Okaka, Lasagne.|
|Inter||Handanovic; Skriniar, Vrij, Bastoni; Young, Barella, Valero, Sensi, Biraghi; Sanchez, Lukaku.|
Head to Head Record
Udinese are without a win against Inter since December 2017, getting one draw and suffering three defeats in that time.
The two teams met in the reverse fixture in September, with Inter running out 1-0 winners thanks to a first-half goal from Stefano Sensi after Rodrigo De Paul had seen red for Udinese.
Inter are unbeaten in their last 14 in Serie A, and have not tasted defeat in the league since losing 2-1 to title rivals Juventus in October. However, Antonio Conte’s side have drawn five of their last six league matches, and are without a Serie A win since beating Napoli in their first game of 2020.
Udinese have suffered two defeats on the bounce, including a 3-2 loss at AC Milan where they conceded in the 93rd minute. Prior to that, Udinese had won three Serie A matches on the bounce to pull themselves away from the relegation zone.
Here’s how the pair have fared in their last five in all competitions:
|Parma 2-0 Udinese (26/01)||Inter 2-1 Fiorentina (29/01)|
|Milan 3-2 Udineses (19/01)||Inter 1-1 Cagliari (26/01)|
|Juventus 4-0 Udinese (15/01)||Lecce 1-1 Inter (19/01)|
|Udinese 3-0 Sassuolo (12/01)||Inter 4-1 Cagliari (16/01)|
|Lecce 0-1 Udinese (06/01)||Inter 1-1 Atalanta (11/01)|
Udinese have not lost at home in the league since October, so Inter face a tough test if they are to end their winless Serie A run. Their title challenge appeared to have been stuttering in recent weeks, but Inter’s new signings should freshen things up and give them a new lease of life, and they should edge this one.
Score Prediction: Udinese 1-2 Inter