ROME – Unlucky evening for the Italian teams involved in the Champions League. Inter have been dominated by Barcelona and have deservedly lost on Spanish soil but consolidate second place thanks to a draw between Tottenham and PSV. The Nerazzurri are in the area qualifying for over 5 on English and Dutch.
Napoli dominated the field of PSG, scored two goals – the first of Insigne and the second of Mertens – and hit a crossbar with the Belgian striker but was resumed at the 93 'by a magic of Di Maria and earlier he had been mocked by Mario Rui's own goal.
This result is still valuable because it allows Napoli to take second place, at least one of the Liverpool leaders and one more on Psg. In qualifying, the next match between Napoli and PSG at the San Paolo will be decisive.
Naples dominates in Paris but is mocked by Di Maria
The Napoli sfora the enterprise to the Park of the Principles, nailing the Psg on the tie (2-2) reached from the French only to the 93 'thanks to a magic of Di Maria. The result is close to the Azzurri of Ancelotti who play a careful and intense match, dominating over the opponents for long sections of the race.
At the PSG guests leave the field only for the first 10-15 minutes of the two-game, for the rest of the game is the Naples to manage the game and often create the conditions to transform the dominance in scoring opportunities. Ancelotti sends almost the same formation used on the occasion of the winning match against Liverpool, with the only difference being Mertens instead of Milik.
Fabian Ruiz, preferred as a left-wing midfield player in Zielinski, does his part very well, contributing not only to erecting a barrier that hinders the start of the opposing action, but also becoming dangerous when supporting his team's offensive game. The Spaniard is the best in the field, along with an irreducible Allan who jumps into the field making life difficult for all the opponents who are passing through his area.
In the first half of the game, after a brief initial suffering, the Azzurri take the ball in hand and move the axis of the game in the French half of the field. The first half ended 1-0 for the team of Ancelotti, but on other three occasions the Neaples go very close to the marking, first with Mertens that with a deviation to the flight sends the ball to print on the crossbar with Areola unable to intervene and on two other occasions with Insigne, however, that is inaccurate in the conclusion. The PSG is not lucid in its offensive actions.
Neymar, hard hit by Cavani involuntarily in the opening of the race and therefore a little limited in his movements, tries to find space towards the midfield, Cavani is almost always closed by Albiol while Koulibaly, helped in some cases by the doubles of Mario Rui, in a way or the other puts the gag to Mbappè. On one occasion, the latter appears only before the door but Ospina deflects him the low shot with a foot intervention. In the second half Napoli lost almost immediately Insigne, hit on the side in the first half.
Zielinski enters, but the theme of the race does not change, with the Psg that after a useless initial outburst loses control of the game. The French reached a draw in the 15th minute with an unfortunate own goal by Mario Rui who deflected a crossbar behind Ospina that probably would not have caused any damage.
The Napoli, however, reacts vehemently, repossess the match and find the goal of the advantage in the 31st minute with Mertens quick to exploit a rebound on Marquinhos after a conclusion by Ruiz. The Blues resisted for a long time at the final rush of the French but at the third minute of an excessive recovery of 5 'set by the referee, the hosts found the draw with a shot to turn of Di Maria from the edge of the area.
There remains the regret for the lack of victory, but there is also the satisfaction of having maintained the second place in the standings at the end of the first round and for having shown overall a clear superiority of play compared to PSG, despite the atomic attack of French.
Barcelona folds Inter also without Messi
Even without Messi, the Barcelona remains of another level for Inter: at the Camp Nou the former Rafinha and Jordi Alba launch the blaugrana and the Nerazzurri return home with a nevertheless honorable defeat, also in the light between PSV and Eindhoven. But the streak of seven consecutive successes for Spalletti's men stops, too fearful in the first half but capable in more than one occasion to worry about the opposing goal.
The tactical plan of the coach declared on the eve ("we have to keep the ball to get some chances") does not work, because the Barcelona wins possession at the start and does not give up anymore. The Nerazzurri struggled to put three passes in a row, suffering the violent pressing blaugrana. Yet the first real opportunity comes for Inter: after 16 'cross from the left of Perisic, Icardi anticipates Ter Stegen but the ball ends high.
The Catalans' answer is immediate, Handanovic gives Lenglet a header with his body. Inter suffer but try to sting, with Icardi taking the time to Lenglet, he flies towards the door but slips at the time of shooting. However, suffering remains too much. And the mistakes of the Nerazzurri are punished by the great ex, Rafinha, who at the 32 'bag (on a sleep of Skriniar) with a south cross Suarez cross.
Just the Brazilian, protagonist in Spalletti's men's run-up Champions during the last season, sends Inter for the third time in three races in Europe. The team that leaves the locker room at the beginning of the second half is totally different. Spalletti enters Politano for one off Candreva and the Nerazzurri offensive maneuver comes alive. The former Sassuolo is immediately seen, with a cross-shot that Ter Stegen flies to put in the corner. An Inter finally alive, attacking Barcelona high and sends him in trouble: Politano would have another chance, but shoots high on Icardi heel.
The blaugrana, however, when they attack always hurt. Suarez plays the alarm clock with a central right, then Asamoah badly serves Lenglet, Handanovic is exalted by saving with his foot on the close end of the defender. Spalletti also test Lautaro Martinez's move, paired with Icardi, in the last half hour. An entry that does not change the layout of the match, because the men of Valverde continue to be dangerous: Suarez still engages Handanovic, then Coutinho from a few steps center the crossbar and Rakitic with the left-handed still touches the doubling.
Inter staggered and finally collapsed a few minutes from the end, with a diagonal of Jordi Alba that leaves no way out to the Slovenian goalkeeper. After seven wins in a row, the Nerazzurri stop in front of a too strong Barcelona even without Messi. A defeat made less bitter by the draw between Tottenham and Psv, which left the Nerazzurri to +5 in the standings by the English and the Dutch.
The Champions League: Napoli resumed at 93 'from the PSG, Inter collapses in Barcelona but the Italian smiles ranking seems to be the first on Blitz daily .
Source: Blitz Quotidiano