MILAN - Inter secured a spot in the Coppa Italia semi-final thanks to a narrow home win over Fiorentina on Wednesday, with Candreva and Barella sealing the victory thanks to goals either side of half-time.
“It was a deserved win,” said Antonio Conte after the match. “We’re pleased to have progressed and to now be in the semi-final where we’ll face Napoli in a great two-legged encounter. Our objective is to go as far as possible in every competition to gain more experience and keep improving.”
Several absences encouraged the Nerazzurri Coach to start with Sanchez, Lautaro and Lukaku against the Viola: “We only had Vecino and Barella available in midfield so we were forced to prepare something different in just one day. We must now look to get some of our players back, especially in the middle. We rushed Eriksen’s inclusion, who must grasp our style of play but has already demonstrated his characteristics. He’s an adaptable and intelligent player, always finding himself in the right positions. Obviously, he’ll raise our game in terms of experience and quality.”
It was a wonderful strike from Nicolò Barella that settled it at the Meazza - a player who Conte singled out for praise: “He’s growing. Like Stefano (Sensi), he also had a tough injury and needed to regain match fitness, while also returning to our style of play. He put in a great performance today, whether that was with Vecino in the middle or when playing in front of the defence. Nicolò has strength, energy and quality when shooting from outside the box. He must keep this up to get back to how he was playing before his injury.”