GROSSO SCORES AS INTER HOLD CAGLIARI

CAGLIARI - Fabio Grosso scored his first goal for Inter as the Nerazzurri held Cagliari to a 1-1 draw at the Sant'Elia.

The World Cup winner netted seven minutes before the break after a creative Cagliari side went ahead through Colucci.

Roberto Mancini named a 4-3-3 formation for the Serie A Week 5 clash with Ibrahimovic, Crespo and Adriano in attack, but was forced to switch to a 4-4-2 after Crespo hobbled off with a hamstring injury

Cagliari took a 17th-minute lead when Mauro Esposito drifted in from the left and floated a cross over to an unmarked Colucci who volleyed past Julio Cesar from close range.

Ibrahimovic fired a low shot wide from 25 yards as Cagliari continued to hit Inter on the break, Esposito forcing a great save from Julio Cesar after receiving a Suazo pass in the area.

Inter lost Crespo to injury just after the half hour, but gained in terms of tactics with Santiago Solari coming on to give the Nerazzurri more depth in a four-man midfield.

The forced substitution and resulting tactical switch led to an Inter-dominated end to the first half. Grosso converted a Maicon cross at the back post to bring the teams level a minute after Adriano had a close-range effort disallowed for offside.

In a flurry of attacking activity before the break Solari went close with a long-range drive and Ibrahimovic was denied by Chimenti before the Cagliari keeper kept out a Stankovic curler.

In a low-key second half that saw more bookings than clear-cut chances on goal, Suazo sent a long-range free kick wide while Solari narrowly missed the target with a scissor kick.

The Argentine winger, who twice set up Ibrahimovic and Adriano with testing crosses from the left, had a chance to seal victory in the final minutes but saw his left-foot drive parried by Chimenti.

The draw sees Inter slip to second in the Serie A table as Roma edged Empoli 1-0 to move top. The Giallorossi will be joined by Palermo tonight if the Sicilians win against Chievo in Verona.

CAGLIARI 1-1 INTER (HT: 1-1)

Scorers: Colucci 17, Grosso 38

CAGLIARI: 25 Chimenti; 29 Ferri (14 Pisano 80), 20 Bianco, 6 Lopez, 13 Del Grosso; 16 Biondini, 5 Conti, 21 Colucci, 24 D'Agostino (18 Pepe 67); 7 Esposito (4 Budel 90+1), 9 Suazo
Subs not used: 26 Fortin, 22 Bizera, 31 Agostini, 23 Langella
Coach: Marco Giampaolo

INTER: 12 Julio Cesar; 13 Maicon, 2 Cordoba, 23 Materazzi, 11 Grosso (7 Figo 55); 4 Zanetti, 15 Dacourt, 5 Stankovic; 8 Ibrahimovic, 18 Crespo (21 Solari 33), 10 Adriano (91 Mariano Gonzalez 87)
Subs not used: 1 Toldo, 16 Burdisso, 77 Andreolli, 6 Maxwell
Coach: Roberto Mancini

Referee: Domenico Messina (Bergamo)

Booked: Grosso 16, Bianco 53, Cordoba 58, Maicon 82, Dacourt 83, Esposito 88


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