Undeserved defeat at San Siro: Samp play well but lose against the Nerazzurri
Sampdoria lost a tightly fought and competitive encounter against Inter 2-1 at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza this evening.
The Blucerchiati played well throughout and looked particularly impressive playing out from the back, but during a five-minute spell midway through the second conceded twice and could only score once.
The hosts made the stronger start and had a couple of chances within the first ten minutes, Emil Audero saving on both occasions against Ivan Perisic and then Lautaro Martinez.
Marco Giampaolo’s players grew into the game after the first quarter of an hour and started to find their passing rhythm. On a number of occasions, the Blucerchiati managed to bypass Inter’s midfield with a sharp interchange of passes.
However, chances still came at a premium and Doria’s best opportunity came in the 35th minute when Riccardo Saponara was played in the left side of the box and, from a tight angle, tried to find the far corner, sending his shot trickling past the wrong side of the post.
Inter were giving as good as they got and came close through Matteo Politano and Radja Nainggolan in the first half. Audero nearly committed a massive error in the 37th minute, letting a Perisic shot dribble through his legs, but our keeper was sharp enough and managed to claw the ball back before it crossed the line.
On the stroke of half-time, Inter thought they had the lead when former Blucerchiati star Milan Skriniar lashed a volley beyond Audero. However, the goal was rightly disallowed since Politano was standing about a yard offside in the build-up.
Sampdoria almost made the perfect start to the second half when Gregoire Defrel found himself one-on-one with Samir Handanovic, but the Slovenian keeper stood up well and denied the Frenchman.
The chances started to flow more regularly for both sides and it seemed merely a question of who and when for the opening goal of the evening.
The answers to those questions were Danilo D’Ambrosio and the 73rd minute. Ivan Perisic broke into the six-yard box with a neat stepover and fired a cross into the danger area, where D’Ambrosio managed to get ahead of his marker and shoot into the net.
Giampaolo responded to going down immediately by throwing on Manolo Gabbiadini and going with two out-and-out strikers in attack. It looked to have been a masterstroke, as with his first touch of the game Gabbiadini pounced on a loose ball in the area and shot low past Handanovic to restore parity.
With 15 minutes to go, Samp could have afforded to take a few minutes to breathe, take stock and push again. Unfortunately, before they could do that, Inter had retaken the lead. The ball dropped to Nainggolan on the area and the Belgian struck a volley into the bottom-right corner.
The players struggled manfully to get back in the game for a second time but the blow had clearly affected the players. Samp played out the last ten minutes on the front foot but unable to work an opening.
Marco Giampaolo will undoubtedly be disappointed by the result but he can take encouragement from the quality on show at times from his team. Next up is Cagliari, where we’ll look to put this behind us and return to some good form.
Internazionale 2-1 Sampdoria (HT: 0-0)
Scorers: D’Ambrosio 28, Gabbiadini 30, Nainggolan 33.
Internazionale (4-2-3-1): Handanovic; D’Ambrosio, De Vrij, Skriniar, Dalbert; Gagliardini (J. Mario, 60), Brozovic; Politano (Candreva 68), Nainggolan (Vecino, 89), Perisic; Martinez.
Subs not used: Padelli, Ranocchia, Asamoah, B. Valero, Cédric, Miranda.
Sampdoria (4-3-1-2): Audero; Bereszynski (Sala, 81), Tonelli, Andersen, Murru; Praet, Ekdal (Vieira, 81), Linetty; Saponara (Gabbiadini, 74); Defrel, Quagliarella.
Subs not used: Rafael, Belec, Bahlouli, Colley, Sau, Tavares, Ferrari.
Referee: Daniele Doveri.
Assistants: Ciro Carbone and Stefano Del Giovane.
Fourth official: Gianluca Aureliano.
VAR: Gianpaolo Calvarese.
VAR assistant: Mauro Vivenzi.
Yellow cards: D’Ambrosio 17, Perisic 24, Linetty 27, Skriniar 31.
Additional time: 2+5 minutes.