SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 35 - 4 May 2019 (19.30 UK)
Udinese 0 - 0 Inter
Dacia Arena

Inter were held to their third consecutive stalemate and Udinese added a point to stay clear of the drop zone, but both sides had penalty appeals.

The Nerazzurri weren’t yet mathematically sure of Champions League football after draws with Roma and Juventus, but brought in Borja Valero to replace injured Matias Vecino with Lautaro Martinez chosen rather than Mauro Icardi. The Friulani sat four points clear of the relegation zone and were dealing with an injury crisis, ruling out William Troost-Ekong, Nicolas Opoku, Seko Fofana, Valon Behrami, Antonin Barak and the suspended Samir.

Radja Nainggolan’s strike from the edge of the box bounced right in front of Juan Musso, who did well to get down and fingertip it round the far post.

It was an ill-tempered start to the game and Danilo D’Ambrosio was perhaps fortunate to only get a yellow card when he caught Sandro’s shin with his studs.

D’Ambrosio almost scored soon after, his header from a free kick flashing across the face of goal where Lautaro Martinez could only graze the far post from point-blank range.

Rodrigo De Paul tried to drill his free kick under the wall, but it was deflected off Nainggolan, while Rolando Mandragora stung Samir Handanovic’s gloves on a counter-attack from De Paul’s rapid counter-attack.

Matteo Politano and Marcelo Brozovic could only fire off target from outside the area, but there was controversy on the stroke of half-time.

Mandragora nutmegged Brozovic and as he tried to run after the ball was shoved over by the Croatian inside the penalty area, but the referee waved away penalty appeals.

Within 60 seconds of the restart, Musso had to get down to push a Lautaro Martinez daisy-cutter out of the near bottom corner.

Handanovic blocked a powerful but central Mandragora strike, but Ivan Perisic’s cross-shot almost snuck in at the far post and Musso reacted well with an outstretched boot as Stefan de Vrij flicked on a Nainggolan effort.

Inter also had penalty appeals waved away, as substitute Icardi thought Sebastien De Maio had caught his heel as a low cross came in.

At the 87th minute, Keita Balde Diao was at full stretch on a long ball to the back post and Musso made a stunning save from point-blank range.

Luciano Spalletti's men can't feel too comfortable, as they went into this weekend only three points clear of Atalanta and four in front of Roma in fifth place.

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Udinese: Musso; Stryger-Larsen, De Maio, Nuytinck; D'Alessandro (Wilmot 80), Mandragora, Sandro (Hallfredsson 73), De Paul, Zeegelaar; Pussetto (Okaka 60), Lasagna
Inter: Handanovic; D'Ambrosio, De Vrij, Skriniar, Asamoah; Borja Valero (Icardi 63), Brozovic; Politano (Candreva 76), Nainggolan, Perisic; Lautaro Martinez (Keita 79)
Ref: Rocchi