Inter will be desperate to qualify for the Europa League quarter finals on Thursday as they host Eintracht Frankfurt in the second leg of their round of 16 clash.
The tie is finely poised after a 0-0 draw at the Commerzbank-Arena last week, a game in which Marcelo Brozovic had a first half penalty agonisingly saved to prevent Luciano Spalletti’s side taking a strong advantage back to San Siro.
The Italian manager has some unfortunate injuries to contend with ahead of the showdown, so will need to shuffle his pack accordingly to obtain a positive result.
Here’s how Inter could lineup to face Frankfurt on Thursday.
1. Goalkeeper & Defenders
Samir Handanovic (GK) – The Slovenian took over captaincy after Mauro Icardi was stripped of the role in mid-February and has been an ever present in Serie A this season.
Cedric Soares (RB) – Has made the right back slot his own following his loan move from Southampton. The Portuguese star possesses great energy up both aid in attack and perform his defensive responsibilities effectively.
Stefan de Vrij (CB) – The Dutchman is one of the finest defenders in Italy at the moment and has been the rock in a solid Inter backline in his debut season for the club.
Milan Skriniar (CB) – Has forged a fine partnership with de Vrij in the heart of the defence and will have his work cut out to keep Sebastien Haller and Luka Jovic at bay on Thursday.
Kwadwo Asamoah (LB) – Boasts great pace and crossing ability which will be crucial in the clash, and he will look to use that to exploit Eintracht Frankfurt’s use of a three-man defence.
Matias Vecino (CM) – Will come back into midfield in place of Roberto Gagliardini after missing the weekend’s victory over SPAL through suspension.
Marcelo Brozovic (CM) – Missed a crucial penalty in the first leg that would have given his side a strong advantage ahead of Thursday’s match, so will be eager to make amends against the German side.
Matteo Politano (RW) – His excellent pace will cause problems for Eintracht, and the winger will be full of confidence following his goal on the weekend.
Ivan Perisic (LW) – The Croatian should have recovered in time from fatigue for the game at San Siro to start after missing the SPAL match, as Perisic’s quality is unquestionable and will be key to unpicking the Eintracht defence.
Joao Mario (CAM) – Will slot into the attacking midfielder role in place of the injured Radja Nainggolan as the former West Ham man will be tasked with being the driving force in central midfield for Spalletti’s side.
Lautaro Martinez (ST) – Hasn’t enjoyed the prolific goal scoring season he would have liked, with only five goals in 19 matches, but will be called upon the lead the line in place of Icardi. Martinez certainly has the pace and power to trouble defences, but a lack of end product this season has hindered the 21-year-old.
The Argentine has got very big boots to fill following Icardi’s very public fallout with the club. His goal record isn’t going to cut it if he wants to be considered a long term option for Inter, but the young striker does have plenty of potential, with pace and strength in abundance.