Internazionale Milano [2008-2009]

Interista13

Starting XI
Wow, GREAT game played by the boys, I can say every Inter supporter should be pleased with this one! :D

Everybody that played looked great tonight, and hopefully this will continue (Y)
 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
ye, it was a serious drubbing, and the scoreline really did reflect the gulf between the two sides ...

I'm delighted, as usual, with Zlatan's performance ... his first goal was really well taken (he made it look a lot simpler than it was) ...

Deki played his first decent game of the season ... his performance and his goal will give him a lot of confidence, and allow Mourinho more options as the long season of three competitions continues ...

I was surprised at Obinna's inclusion ... I thought Mancini would surely start against his former club ... anyway, the Nigerian did grab a great goal ... and he otherwise did alright, I guess ... again, his performance shows squad depth, which is a very good thing ...

the only thing that worried me was Zlatan's continued flippant attitude towards Quaresma ... it is almost a case of Zlatan subjecting Quaresma to the "new kid" treatment -- until RQ earns some street cred, he'll be treated as nothing more than a runt ...

for Quaresma's part, he's seems to be a lot more self-conscious of the pressure on his shoulders ... instead of running at defenders and taking them to school, he often seems void of ideas, and just reaches for his trivela card -- be it a shot or a cross ... he's clearly eager to earn the respect and love of his teammates and the supporters alike, but it does sometimes look like he's letting that pressure get to him, rather than relishing the opportunity ... but, leaving his tricks and flicks aside, the biggest criticism has to be his final ball: it been constantly lacking so far this season, and unfortunately that final ball is the one that goes to Zlatan ... he looked a lot better when he switched to the left, and I'm sure JM took due notice of that ...

oh, and I know we've said it before, but Maicon is a beast ... on current form, he is definitely the best wingback in the world ... and he should have been on the scoresheet ... after his cool finishing in recent matches, I was almost surprised when he blazed his shot over when he was clean through in the first half ... and he was unlucky in the second half to see his header from Mancini's cross cannon back off the woodwork ... but the fact that we're saying that about a right back is itself a compliment to big Doug ...

moving on to the next task: Anorthosis have already been one of the surprise packages of the Champions League ... but the Champions League is what Moratti, Mourinho, Zlatan, and Co. are all desperate for this season ... I'm sure the squad can't wait to put the Cypriots to the sword at the San Siro ...
 

Internazionale

Elo Ratings
Interista13;2583560 said:
Wow, GREAT game played by the boys, I can say every Inter supporter should be pleased with this one! :D

Everybody that played looked great tonight, and hopefully this will continue (Y)

Hell Yeah !

With another win from today's CL, it's full of joy !

:mike:
 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
^ it was a win, but was not at all as impressive as the weekend win over Roma ... I mean, in the opening 20 minutes, the fluid passing and movement was great to see ... but then the frustration of hitting a defensive wall quickly crept in ...

Zlatan and Adriano usually connect very well, but yesterday they were often not on the same wavelength -- passes misplaced, runs not made, all the usual signs of an off day for the partnership ...

Adriano worked hard, and sent a message to JM that he is fighting hard for his place in the side ... you can see the skill and the pace lurking just under the surface; but unfortunately that surface is Adriano's extra weight, which -- while it is decreasing -- is still holding him back a bit ...

Zlatan, meanwhile, played some excellent balls into the box ... he yet again played no small part in the goal: his perfectly weighted cross-field ball found Maicon in space at the edge of the box, and big Doug's cross was duly headed in for the lead ... unfortunately, the service was lacking when Zlatan was the target in the middle ... having said that, Zlatan's been woeful at converting the simple opportunities so far this season; I mean, he's producing some sublime skill, but then missing the 1-on-1 sitters: when a 1-2 with Adriano sent him clean through, his first touch took him away from the goal, rather than towards it, which meant that he landed himself at unnecessarily tight angle from which to shoot ... but if it's obvious to us watching on the telly, then I'm sure they've already got it on his personal training regimen for the remainder of this week ...

a bright spot was Ricardo Quaresma ... well, relatively speaking ... having come on as a sub, he produced his liveliest performance in Inter colours to date ... he was taking on defenders, putting in crosses, and producing long ranges shots on goal ... the effort was there, but the end product is still lacking ... his crossing failed to beat the first defender on a few occasions, and his runs still are not complimenting (i.e. syncing with) Zlatan's ... he also squandered a golden opportunity to score an easy goal when he somehow failed to control a superb lofted ball from Zlatan ... still, Quaresma's attitude was very refreshing, and I'm going to focus on that positive for the time being ... maybe it's coz he switched to his favoured long sleeves for the first time with Inter?

looking at the big picture: this was another small step towards getting to the knockout stages in top spot ... the team that peaks in the second half of the season is the one that will collect the silverware; in order for that to be the case, the first half of the season needs to ensure that the team stays alive and well in all competitions, but it need not necessarily be as spectacular ... the key is ironing out all the chinks in the armour, and progressing step by step ... so far, the signs are OK ...
 

Interista13

Starting XI
I'm happy the way our team is playing so far :)

Maybe Wednesday's win might not have been a spectacular follow-up to Sunday's performance but then again I don't really see why is should've been. The boys went out there, got 3 points, and went home. It was important not to get tired so we can kick @ss this weekend (Y)

Like I said the team is in form. Despite all the injuries Mourinho is pleasantly holding his own in the league (Y)

Hopefully this form will continue for the entire season until the end and the boys won't fizzle out. Theupcoming months will be some very tough tests for us both in the CL and league. We all know when February/March comes around...well...

Lastly I'm glad the way Adriano's been playing. He seems very motivated and truly wants to get back to his previous form, and that can only do good for us! I've always been a supporter of his and I'm glad he's finally got his brains...and his foot back
 

per75005

Reserve Team
Some rumors for the winter mercato :

 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
he'd be a waste of an acquisition ... he's not as creative as other attacking midfielders ... and the system would need to be changed to accomodate him ... if the squad needs a "#10", then they're better off looking at the likes of Diego ...

I'd personally prefer to see the addition of either Aquilani or Hamšík to fill the role of the more attacking position in the midfield trio ... actually, the rumours of Ángel Di María being on the wanted list have been circulating since Argentina won the Olympics ... he'd be a very decent purchase, but may not make an immediate impact ...

the defence needs more beefing up and some slightly long term planning, in my opinion ... if Branca can convince Mexès to leave Roma and convince Roma to part with Mexès, then a partnership of Cristi-Mexès would be ideal for me -- they're already best mates off the pitch, and seem telepathically linked on it ... but that would have to be a summer transfer ...

maybe getting Angelo Palombo would be good for the squad, because it would allow Mourinho to continue using Cambiasso as a central defensive option with Palombo slotting into defensive midfield; at least until the summer, when a bigger purchase can be made ...
 

Interista13

Starting XI
Yeah although it may seem incredibly stupid, we STILL need more defenders...8|

Though I wouldn't really like to get Mexes, I just think there are other options that would be better...

I agree I think we must make a push to get some more attacking central midfielders especially like Aquilani...who knows maybe the way Roma's season has been going he might actually be tempted to come to us...

Most of all I think we need to get some more Italian players. We barely have a few but 2 actually play regularly and out of those I heard rumors Balotelli wants to leave...so I think Branca and Moratti should really make a push for some home-grown talent
 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
for some reason, the picture of Éver Banega in per's post didn't show up when I posted my reply ... so my comment about "he'd be a waste of an acquisition" was about Elano ...

I actually like Banega ... I was surprised that Valencia were so quick to discard him ... I'd still pick Aquilani over Banega, but he's still a good prospective ...

another name I'd like to throw in there for the midfield is Achille Emana ... this guy really impressed at the 2008 Africa Cup ... I've been following his progress and performances since ... he made the move to Andalucía and La Liga over the summer, and he's been excellent for Real Betis ... he'd be a very shrewd signing, and, for me, would get the nod over Deki any day of the week ...
 

per75005

Reserve Team
Agree with U Xifio, why not Banega a good player for the future...
Elano, I don't know this player very well, that's probably mean that he's not exeptional....

Like Interista and U I would like to see Mexes playing with Inter...

Regarding Balotelli, to be honnest it would be normal to see a player like him go away for playing more time... But the season is long, and we will propably need him later... to face CL and calccio....

Next step : Inter vs. Genoa :::> that's the moment to take lot of points... to be able to be toward to CL in 2009....
 

per75005

Reserve Team
Not convinced by this last match, I watched some part of the match yesterday evening... Disapointed....

Hope best from this team (they have the potential)....
 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
^ the performance was not that great ... and the injuries added to the feeling of disgruntlement ...

going forward, the overdependence on Zlatan is getting unfair -- he is quite often triple-marked, and can't do it all on his; at least, not every match ...

from Mourinho's post-match outburst, it looks like his patience with Quaresma has run out -- RQ is only slowly getting settled into his new team ... but the basic problem isn't so much Quaresma's workrate; in fact, I'm sure that if his final ball into the box were better, or his link-up play with Zlatan were less abysmal, all else would forgiven and forgotten ...

it would be harsh to drop him from the squad entirely for the Fiorentina game ... but I wouldn't disapprove of using Quaresma in a supersub role for the time being ... I think his best performance so far came when he produced a fairly impressive second-half cameo in the Champions League last week ... using Quaresma in short bursts may be quite effective right now, until he's got a few assists and/or goals under his belt ...

apparently Adriano is going to get the axe too ... his sheer lack of pace makes him fairly ineffective in the 4-3-3, although he tries to make up for it with his strength ... it's clear to me that Adriano needs to be used in a 4-4-2 setup in tandem with Zlatan ...

looking at the other attacking options:

1) Mancini has settled in a lot better than Quaresma ... and he is a lot fitter and better suited to the 4-3-3 than Adriano ... I'm sure he'll get a deserved start midweek ...

2) I can't understand the ostracizing of Hernán Crespo ... he's gotten goals wherever he's gone ... I'd play him up top in a 4-4-1-1, and Zlatan supporting behind him ... Mancini would be out wide on the left of midfield, with Zanetti on the right -- that'll allow Big Doug to bomb forward from right back, while Pupi plays a more defensive role ...

3) I guess Julio Cruz's surprisingly reinvigorated career is beginning to wane ... we haven't seen enough of him this season to know whether he's still as sharp and if his positioning is still as impressive ... but he needs to be played in the middle, and not wasted out wide ... if Crespo is definitely out of the reckoning, I'd play Cruz in that 4-4-1-1 formation ...

4) Balotelli is a bit of silly case right now ... I mean, there have been glimpses of sheer class from him ... but I've also seen some some horrendous finishing from him over the pre-season, which shows that he is far from the finished article ... if nurtured well, I'm sure he'll be a starter for Italy in the future, and an excellent striker for Inter ... but this talk of a transfer request does not make him look good in any way, and it is disappointing to see that his close friends and family did not advise him better ... I would have sent Balotelli out on loan this season, but it looks like Moratti has closed that door ... clearly, Mourinho needs to have a sit-down with him so that he gets Mario's head straight, and understands the long and possibly success-laden path that lies ahead of him if he shuts up and keeps working ...

5) from what I've seen of Obinna, I don't think he should be part of the long-term plans at Inter; he seems like a bit of a headless chicken at times ... he's got a little pace, but I think his shortcomings allow opponents to find him out and close him down very easily ... he reminds me of a young Pius Ikedia -- and if you don't know who Pius Ikedia is, then I've made my point ...


it will be interesting to see what Mourinho ends up doing with the team against Fiorentina ... it should be a good match regardless of the squad choices he makes ...
 

per75005

Reserve Team
"it's clear to me that Adriano needs to be used in a 4-4-2 setup in tandem with Zlatan ..." (by Xifio)

Totally agree with U, i would also say that I'd prefer to have this system...

wait and see...
 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
the much anticipated Squad for the Fiorentina match, which should reveal a lot about what was said by Mourinho, and who is was talking about:

Inter.it said:
Goalkeepers: 1 Francesco Toldo, 12 Julio Cesar, 22 Paolo Orlandoni.

Defenders: 2 Ivan Ramiro Cordoba, 6 Maxwell, 13 Maicon, 16 Nicolas Burdisso, 25 Walter Samuel, 23 Marco Materazzi, 26 Cristian Chivu.

Midfielders: 4 Javier Zanetti, 5 Dejan Stankovic, 14 Patrick Vieira, 15 Olivier Dacourt, 33 Amantino Mancini, 77 Ricardo Quaresma.

Strikers: 8 Zlatan Ibrahimovic, 18 Hernan Crespo, 21 Victor Obinna, 45 Mario Balotelli.

here's some of the things I alluded to in my previous post, along with comments on what I feel is suggested by this announcement:

Adriano
Xifio;2585883 said:
apparently Adriano is going to get the axe too ... his sheer lack of pace makes him fairly ineffective in the 4-3-3, although he tries to make up for it with his strength ...
so, it's true, Adriano got the axe ... whether it was purely down to his performance, or how much it had to do all the crap about him partying, I don't know ... for his sake, let's hope he was dropped on performance, and not for his nightlife, because that would put a serious dent in his resurgence, and may even close his chapter with Inter ...


Crespo
Xifio;2585883 said:
I can't understand the ostracizing of Hernán Crespo ... he's gotten goals wherever he's gone ... I'd play him up top in a 4-4-1-1, and Zlatan supporting behind him ... Mancini would be out wide on the left of midfield, with Zanetti on the right -- that'll allow Big Doug to bomb forward from right back, while Pupi plays a more defensive role ...
I just said it yesterday, and now look who's back in contention ... I've liked Crespo since the late 90s, and he has always been a striker who relied more on positioning and clinical finishing (with either foot or with his head) than anything with quick feet or pace ... that's why I don't believe his quality would have diminished too much with age, and I really hope to see him getting a chance and firing in the goals this team needs ... as I said in my post, a 4-4-1-1 with Zlatan behind Crespo, or even a standard 4-4-2, really would work well ...


Quaresma
Xifio;2585883 said:
it would be harsh to drop him from the squad entirely for the Fiorentina game ... but I wouldn't disapprove of using Quaresma in a supersub role for the time being ... I think his best performance so far came when he produced a fairly impressive second-half cameo in the Champions League last week ... using Quaresma in short bursts may be quite effective right now, until he's got a few assists and/or goals under his belt ...
so JM's kept him in the squad, like I wanted ... I expect to see him used as an impact player off the bench, with either Balotelli or Obinna getting the start ... but maybe the fact that €30M was shelled out for this maverick means that Quaresma's going to get one more chance before being benched ...


Defence
a back 4 of Maicon-Córdoba-Samuel-Chivu? I personally think that if those 4 are all 100% fit, then that's what the defence should look like with the squad available ... Maicon will maraud forward from right wingback, while Cristi stays a lot further back in a lot more defensive role compared to Big Doug ... and with a beast like Júlio César between the sticks, that defence will be something to contend with ...


Midfield
Cambiasso is the biggest loss in the middle of the park ... he's pretty much been MVP of the season so far ... but apparently he should be back for the weekend match, or at the latest for the Champions League match next week ... Muntari is also out injured, but that unfortunately seems to be a bit more long term ...

so the midfield is looking a little thin ... Mourinho was asked what he thought about it for the Fiorentina match, and he's pretty much satisfied with having to choose from Vieira, Stanković, Dacourt and Zanetti ... a lot will depend on how he decides to set up the team ... the usual 3 in the middle will likely see Vieira, Deki and Pupi start ... if it's in a 4-4-2, then the combinations will be a little more interesting: Pupi will obviously play, but I'm not sure if he will be played in the middle or on the right side of midfield; Vieira should slot into the "Cambiasso role" ...


Formation
the question mark lies on what formation Mourinho will use ... 4-3-3 with Mancini on the left, and Balotelli or Obinna or Quaresma on the right? I'm not excited about Balotelli or Obinna out wide, but that's what I expect ...

but maybe, and I'm hoping for this, we'll see 4-4-2 or 4-4-1-1 with Zlatan and Crespo (or Balotelli) up front, with Mancini on the left side of midfield, and someone else on the right ...
 

per75005

Reserve Team

President, your comments on Fiorentina-Inter?
"It certainly wasn't Inter's best match in this start to the season but we're just at the start of the championship and we have a new coach, new tactics and new ideas. We need to get into gear, not every match is the same."
The statistics say that Milan have surpassed Inter in the table for the first time in three years. Are you worried?
"No. There are no big worries at the start of the championship. And I'm not worried because Inter have the potential to positively resolve any situation. But we have to show it and and we're waiting for them to show it."
Are you worried about the handling of Adriano and Cruz? You have always had an excellent relationship with the Argentine. Is Mourinho perhaps being too harsh?
"No. Mourinho wants to maintain discipline. I have a good relationship with all my players, so there are no preferences. The coach uses the same method to change idea when something happens that makes him change his mind."
You play in Reggio Calabria in two days' time. Reggina are a team in difficulty but they will try to attack Inter. Theoretically, there's the risk of dropping a few places down the table. Does this worry you?
"You always worry about the next match, but theory has no value in football."


source: inter.it.​

 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
^ ye, no real worries yet ... I mean, just compare the Seria A to La Liga and the Prem ... the top 3-4 have a couple of the usual suspects as well as a couple of surprises ... it's still early in the season, and Inter are still in the mix, so that's all that's important for the time being ... once again, the team that peaks in the second half of the season is the one that will win the silverware ...

that Fiorentina match could so easily have gone like the Roma match had Mancini's early shot gone in instead of come back off the woodwork ... it was good to see Crespo given a chance; and he nearly scored immediately after coming on ...

clearly Mourinho hasn't sorted out his best XI because he hasn't sorted out the formation ... 4-3-3 is geared to attack, which is a good thing ... and it's not that the team doesn't have players who can fit into that formation, because this Inter squad is very versatile; it's just that a 4-4-2 or a 4-4-1-1 could better bring out the best from the star players ...

the problem may also be consistency: one can only really say that Maicon and Júlio César have been "in form" at the start of the season ... Zlatan has produced a couple of Man of the Match performances ... Pupi Zanetti and Cambiasso have both been essential in the middle of the park, but haven't been void of lapses in concentration ...

but, truth be told, Mourinho hasn't yet had a fully fit squad at his disposal: Cambiasso's played as CB, while the midfield has seen Chivu and even Burdisso ...

the real blessing is the fairly comfortable Champions League draw, which has meant that the team doesn't need to play at 100% to progress top of the group ... (that's not to say that complacency should set in ...)

sooner or later, Mourinho will sort it out ... one thing is for sure: there will be a couple of changes in the squad come January ...
 

Xifio

The Von Trapps
^ there is no way Mourinho can take the blame for the complete incompetency of individual players ...

I mean what the f*ck was Burdisso thinking? the first goal was just utter idiocy ... and on the third goal: have some balls man, you're a defender! the shamefulness of it!

firstly, let's look at the weekend match:

the score at Reggio Calabria was very flattering to Reggina ...

Mourinho's change in formation to 4-4-2 worked well ... Quaresma put in an impressive performance (not just relative to his pale form this season) and was unlucky not have gotten a goal to go with his excellent assist ...

when the team surged into a 0-2 lead, they took their foot off the pedal -- and instead of going into cruise control, they slackened, allowing Reggina to gain an unlikely 2 goals ... it was such an uncharacteristic loss in concentration by the defence, whose two cleansheets going into the match actually hinted at the possibility that, with no injuries casualties at the back, the backline was settling into a nice groove ...

and then, to seriously compound the problems, Cristi Chivu was taken off injured (and is going to be out for a while) ...

a deserved winner was claimed, though from an unlikely source ... 3-2 was not an accurate reflection on the match, but the lapse in concentration needed to be learned from ...


now for the Anorthosis match:

with Chivu out injured, there was always going to be a forced change in defence ... but Córdoba must have been nursing a minor injury too, for I can think of no other reason for why he wasn't used ... so rather than throwing Samuel into a European game for his first appearance since returning from injury, Burdisso and Matrix were given the start ...

once you see those two names in the lineup you know that, if they played as per their usual standards, a f*ck up or a sending off was likely ... but this was Anorthosis, which presented an excellent chance for them to prove their worth (as Toldo had done in the previous encounter) ... but no one could have imagined the level of f*ck up produced by Burdisso ... one could argue that Júlio César should share the blame, but the sheer lack of awareness is what makes me pin it on Burdisso -- his second half howler only served to vindicate my opinion ...

while the first and third goals were down to farcical defending, the second was just pure luck for the Cypriots ... a header rebounding off the back of your head and going in is going to happen once in a blue moon (if that) ...

Cambiasso nearly made up for his "error" by getting a goal: his header looked like it had crossed the line ...


in attack, Balotelli had a good game: a goal and two assists (all three from set pieces) summed up a very good performance by him, though he wasn't so impressive in open play (I remember more than one woefully weak pass that gave possession away) ...

Zlatan continues to miss the easy ones, yet make the difficult look naturally easy -- in the opening minutes, he hit the keeper from less than six yards out when he had the goal at his mercy, and then late in the match he fluffed his shot when in front of an open net, albeit from a tight angle ... but then it was his blistering freekick from 35 yards that was so hot to handle that it pretty much set the first goal on a platter for Balotelli ... I know that the team relies too heavily on him, but he can certainly do better ... I'm sure he'll produced more matchwinning performances ... anyway, I'd rather he reserve those for the big teams in the big games, when the world is watching a lot closer than they would have been against Anorthosis ...

moving on to the rest of the attack:

Quaresma looked lively in the first half, but faded as match went on ...

Mancini didn't do too much ...

with Crespo not registered and Adriano left out, Julio Cruz got a shot at redeeming himself ... and he duly obliged by coming off the bench to get the equalizer and restore his chances of a first team spot ... that said, he didn't combine too well with Zlatan: once he somehow got himself in the way of a cross that was meant for Zlatan, and that would have been far easier for Zlatan to put away; then, the tables were turned and another case of a lack of communication meant that Zlatan got in his way of a late chance ...

there's work to do in all departments ... and the best XI is still not apparent, with players suffering injuries, sudden bouts of inability to follow instruction, or random and inexplicable losses in form ... Mourinho's not in an easy situation ... but, like I said before, there will surely be a couple of changes to the squad in December ... quite a few players have shamed themselves into being put on the 'get the f*ck out' list ...

but it will come together soon enough -- there is enough talent both on the field and on the bench to ensure that happens ... these issues are teething problems ... the real Inter has only been seen in glimpses ... and it can only be a good thing if Europe underestimates the capability of this team ...
 

Interista13

Starting XI
Wooo! Nice win today! :D

Kind of a one-man show in the end, but hey, who can complain about Ibra!!!! (Y)

Let's hope he'll keep on playing like this for the entire season...if he does we surely have a chance at the CL!! (Y)
 


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