SSC Napoli at Inter Milano
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 at 2:45 PM (Giuseppe Meazza)
Napoli travel to the San Siro to face Inter on Wednesday for the first leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final tie. Inter are currently flying at the top of Serie A, while Napoli have struggled to make an impact this season.
Inter entered the Coppa Italia at the Round of 16 stage this season and a brace from in-form striker Romelu Lukaku helped them hammer Cagliari 4-1. Antonio Conte’s side then overcame Fiorentina 2-1 to book their place in the semi-finals. Inter’s convincing performances in this competition mean they are the close second favorites to lift the 2019/20 Coppa Italia trophy, slightly behind Juventus.
Conte’s side returned to the top of the Serie A table with a resounding 4-2 victory over rivals AC Milan last weekend. Lukaku got on the scoresheet yet again as Inter leapfrogged Juventus in the standings. Inter have only lost one of their 23 league games this term and look set to push Juve all the way in the title rice this season. Inter also boast the joint-best defensive record in the division, while only two teams have scored more goals.
Napoli kicked off their Coppa Italia campaign with a 2-0 win against Serie B outfit Perugia. The Serie A side gave Perugia plenty of goalscoring opportunities and were slightly fortunate not to conceded. Napoli then secured a shock win over high-flying Lazio in the previous round. Lorenzo Insigne scored the only goal of the game after just 2 minutes but Napoli managed to hold onto their lead to set up a semi-final clash with Inter.
It’s fair to say that Napoli are enduring a hugely frustrating Serie A campaign this term. Gennaro Gattuso’s side have now lost more games (9) than they’ve won (8) in the league and come into this game in eleventh place following a 3-2 defeat to Lecce last time out. Napoli have enjoyed success in the Coppa Italia this season, but their league form has been questionable. It’s going to be tough for Gattuso’s men to reach the final.
Prediction and Pick
Inter have been far the better side this season, so odds of 1.91 for the home win in this matchup are very attractive. Napoli have shown glimpses of what they’re capable of, but their inconsistency makes them the underdogs for this matchup. Conte’s side will want to take a big lead into the second leg, so I can see Inter winning this one comfortably.