Inter fought back from a Gervinho brace to snatch a less than impressive 2-2 draw with Parma, thanks to Marcelo Brozovic and a last-gasp Ivan Perisic header.
The Nerazzurri were forced into changes, as Romelu Lukaku, Alexis Sanchez, Stefano Sensi, Matias Vecino and Milan Skriniar were out of action, so Ivan Perisic was used as a makeshift forward with Christian Eriksen in the hole. The Ducali were continuing to struggle with a COVID outbreak that decimated their squad, including two players who were reinfected over the last 24 hours.
There was a last-minute change when referee Luca Pairetto sustained a muscular injury, so fourth official Marco Piccinini stepped up instead.
In the opening couple of minutes, Perisic chested down a Nicolò Barella ball over the top and volleyed it over from 12 yards. Samir Handanovic made a fine one-handed save on Andreas Cornelius, although Gervinho might’ve been offside in the build-up anyway.
Simone Iacoponi did just enough to stop Lautaro Martinez tapping in after good work from Barella and Eriksen, while Aleksandar Kolarov drilled wide from distance.
Following the initial panic, Parma comfortably neutralised Inter in the first half, only allowing numerous corners. The only exception was Kolarov’s cross to Achraf Hakimi, who got in front of Giuseppe Pezzella only to nod over from close range.
Roberto Inglese, who wasn’t even in the Parma squad until this morning, came on for the second half and the Ducali took the lead within seconds of the restart.
Hernani floated a ball over the top, Gervinho sprinted away between two defenders to spring the offside trap and placed a wonderful volley with the inside of the left boot into the top corner.
Inter had the ball in the net too on 52 minutes, but Andrea Ranocchia was offside when he redirected the Barella effort from a corner, especially as it was also flicked on by Stefan de Vrij.
The Nerazzurri still struggled to create genuine chances and went 2-0 behind, as Gervinho ran on to a perfect through ball from Inglese to stroke the finish below on-rushing Handanovic.
Inter got one back moments later, Marcelo Brozovic with a strike from the edge of the area that took a deflection off Botond Balogh to wrong-foot Sepe into the near bottom corner.
Perisic had a strong penalty appeal when he seemed to be hauled down by Balogh, but the referee could not have been in a better position and waved play on, so VAR did not intervene.
Sepe made a stunning reaction save from point-blank range on Ranocchia in Inter’s 13th corner of the game, but had precious little else to do, as Lautaro Martinez and Arturo Vidal continued to fire off target or miss the ball entirely.
Deep into stoppages, Aleksandar Kolarov flashed a free kick across the six-yard box and Perisic got his forehead to it to glance past helpless Sepe, completing Inter’s comeback from 0-2 to 2-2.
It was nearly 3-2 with the last kick, as a cross found Arturo Vidal’s diving header wide from six yards.
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