BARI – The Stadio San Nicola in Bari was packed to the rafters for the 2012 TIM Trophy, the traditional pre-season tournament now in its 12th edition. Inter and Juventus faced off in the first of three mini-matches, in playing conditions that were far from ideal: 30°C heat and a cut-up playing surface even before the first ball was kicked by the Nerazzurri.
Juventus started off on the front foot and the Nerazzurri seemed to be in difficulty in the opening spell. Juventus had an early chance when Lichtsteiner headed the ball into the path of Quagliarella but the striker hesitated a split second too long, allowing Jonathan and Handanovic to mop up.
Inter took the lead after 12 minutes. Mbaye picked out Milito and the Argentine chipped the ball over Lucio, an awkward bounce taking the former Nerazzurri defender out of the equation as Coutinho latched onto it and fired clinically past Storari at the near post.
A minute later and there was another chance for Inter: Jonathan drove a low ball across the box from the right and Milito was just inches away from turning in at the far post.
De Ceglie shot wide from the edge of the box in the 16th minute before Marrone had a long-range effort saved by Handanovic on 24 minutes. The big Slovenian did even better shortly after that to deny Quagliarella close up. The striker tried to make amends in the 32nd minute but after being put through by Vidal he could only shoot the wrong side of the post.
Juve continued to press for an equaliser and again went close when Matri got free of Mbaye and played in a dangerous ball that cut all the way through the box before Jonathan cleared.
Stramaccioni shook things up by bringing on Nagatomo for Coutinho and then Longo and Silvestre for Palacio and Mbaye respectively.
On 42 minutes De Ceglie's centre found Asamoah, whose flying header fizzed a whisker wide.
After a minute's added time, the first match of the TIM Trophy finished 1-0 to Inter, Coutinho's 12th-minute strike proving to be the winner.
Inter 1-0 Juventus
Scorer: Coutinho 12.
Inter: 1 Handanovic, 4 Zanetti, 7 Coutinho (55 Nagatomo, 34), 8 Palacio (81 Longo, 39), 14 Guarin, 19 Cambiasso, 22 Milito, 23 Ranocchia, 26 Chivu, 33 Mbaye (6 Silvestre, 39), 42 Jonathan.
Subs: 12 Castellazzi, 6 Silvestre, 24 Benassi, 28 Pasa, 44 Bianchetti, 45 Forte, 46 Del Piero.
Coach: Andrea Stramaccioni.
Juventus: 30 Storari, 2 Lucio, 4 Caceres, 5 Masi, 11 De Ceglie, 22 Asamoah, 23 Vidal, 26 Lichtsteiner, 27 Quagliarella, 32 Matri, 39 Marrone.
Subs: 12 Leali, 31 Branescu, 3 Ziegler, 6 Pazienza, 7 Pepe, 9 Vucinic, 14 Untersee, 15 Bouy, 18 Boakye, 19 Schiavone, 20 Padoin, 24 Rugani, 25 Appelt.
Coach: Antonio Conte.