Inter Go All Out, But Only Get One Goal.By: Mauro | July 29th, 2010
First off, hats of to those 40,000+ Inter fans who showed up and gave their side a proper show of support tonight. I was very impressed with their passion and chants throughout the match. And to São Paulo’s defense and keeper, thanks for keeping this a close and exciting match.
The match started out with plenty of hard fouls and poorly timed passes as both teams found their feet in the first minutes of this match. This type of play is what earned Bolivar his yellow card and consequently Inter’s only yellow card of the night.
With Inter showing far more flair ,with more order on the pitch, and with right back Nei bombing forward constantly and his great partnership with D’Alessandro and Sandro, they created lots of worry for the Sao Paulo back line. Fortunately, Rogerio Ceni weighed in with some key saves to keep his side in it.
Sao Paulo still refused to come out and seemed to look for the advantage from a more defensive posture while attacking with fewer players than Inter. This, of course, means that Inter had most of the possession. With Taison advancing forward and D’Alessandro, Andrezinho and Guiñazu exchanging short passes, Taison had a nice clear header that made Rogerio Ceni pull another fantastic save out of his hat.
With a very mobile Taison, Inter went into the dressing rooms being the far better side on the pitch. Kudos to the Inter players on the right (D’Alessandro, Guiñazu, Sandro and Nei) for shutting down Hernanes and keeping him out of the game so effectively.
Selecting a player of the half would be tough. For Inter, Taison ran his ass off and Rogerio Ceni had to save his side’s behind and kept a very talented Inter side to zero goals in the first 45 minutes. This ended a very rough half for Sao Paulo who could only boast one shot on goal.
The second half picks up where the first half left off. Sao Paulo unable to get to the penalty area because of their lack of committing more than two or three players to each attack. Because they refused to come at Inter with more players, many of their attacks ended in a long range, off target shots or poorly timed or wild crosses into the box.
But Inter never gave up hope on their style of play. Inter’s coach decided to make a substitution to see if fresh legs could give his side an edge they were missing and he wasn’t wrong in doing so.
Giuliano came on for Andrezinho in the 64th minute, and only three minutes later after a broken play, the ball ended up at his feet where he spun around and scored off the keeper’s right post. Inter’s fans exploded and the deserved difference was finally in place and Giuliano scored his fourth of the competition. Inter 1-0.
The rest of the match was more of the same. Inter attacking and São Paulo defending themselves with Miranda and Alex Silva in fine form holding the Colorados off. São Paulo’s newest signing Ricardo Oliveira made an appearance as did Rafael Sobis for Inter but neither came into play too often to make a difference.
Final Score: Inter 1-0.
Inter wasted far too many chances in my opinion and hopefully, they won’t be thinking about those missed chances at the end of next week’s return leg at the Morumbi.
We all know the Morumbi is a larger pitch and will prove to be a different match filled with São Paulo supporters. Let’s hope they bring the funk like Inter’s “Guarda Popular” did tonight.
I had this match going 2-1 to Inter. But the main difference between the two sides was one goal, so I got that right. I honestly expected a stronger showing from the Paulistas and was disappointed that Hernanes couldn’t do more but like I said earlier, I think that proper marking (Sandro and Guiñazu) and positioning by Nei coming forward so often, most likely kept Hernanes on the back foot more often than not.
The return leg is at the Morumbi Stadium, next Thursday, August 5th. Stay tuned.