INTER TRIUMPH IN DRAMATIC DERBY
The Derby della Madoninna was upon us at last, and the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza was absolutely rocking. Every fan in the city had been waiting for this match since the fixture list had been released. Now it was finally upon them, and they were absolutely loving every single moment of it.
"Imbroglioni non vincono mai!"
, translated to 'Cheaters Never Win' in English, rained down from the red half of the stadium as an attack on Inter's ongoing match-fixing scandal, but the diehard Nerazzurri faithful rather delightfully sang back with "Almeno noi non siamo un cazzo!"
, meaning 'At Least We Aren't Shit'.
Just four minutes in, the red half was stunned into silence.
Rogerio had trotted over to the right side of the box to whip in a free kick. His service was met by the head of Milan defender Salvatore Bocchetti, put the Italian's scuffed clearance fell to the feet of Lorenzo Insigne at the top of the box who coolly slotted home to make it 1-0. The Italy international striker sprinted over to the black-and-blue support and reveled in the glory.
Some people had been surprised that Bergomi had opted with a 4-3-3 despite some poor performances from wingers this season, but Raheem Sterling quickly repaid his faith on twenty minutes. The young Englishman collected from Destro before dashing past Didac and rifling inside the near post, doubling Inter's advantage and sending the fans into raptures. It seemed as though the Nerazzurri were going to walk away with a rout.
Kevin-Prince Boateng had other ideas.
Young Italian defender and AC Milan youth product Mattia Ronconi slipped in the Ghanaian international with a delightful through ball from the back line, but Boateng still had plenty to do. The talented midfielder jinked his way around Emerson Luiz before hammering his shot just under the crossbar, leaving Marc-Andre ter Stegen with no chance of making a save. Suddenly, it was 2-1, and the match was on edge once more.
Just four minutes later the Rossoneri came within inches of equalizing. Alexandre Pato had sharply beaten Jan Kirchhoff and Andrea Ranocchia, only to see his sizzling effort crack off of the post and bounce well clear. The two sides went into the break at 2-1 to Inter.
The two sides struggled to really find a way through each other in the second period of play, and little incident occurred. In fact, the highlight of the next 44 minutes was teenage defender Mattia Foresti, an Inter youth product, make his professional debut for the club at left back in place of Alvaro Pereira.
With moments to go in the match, however, things exploded into life. Brazilian playmaker Rogerio pinged the ball into the feet of Lorenzo Insigne who took one touch to control and his next to backheel the ball into the space behind the defense. Rogerio quickly chased it down and delicately chipped the ball over the onrushing Carrizo to make the game safe.
As the stadium exploded and Rogerio celebrated, Milan's frustrated captain Antonio Nocerino shoved Insigne to the ground and kicked him. The referee made no hesitation in pulling out a red card, and the Italian international may face up to an 8 match ban.
"It was disgraceful," said debutante AC Milan boss Simeone after the match. "No footballer, let alone a club captain, should behave in such a way.
Giuseppe Bergomi echoed his counterpart's thoughts, saying, "It was a shame that such a good match had to end in such violence and anger. However, I'm glad to be able to bring our fans home yet another victory in this historic derby."
The derby finished 3-1, and, as usual, the Nerazzurri fans were the ones staying after the whistle to bask in the glory of their seemingly unbeatable club. Yet again, Milan is blue and black.