Reshuffled Inter pegged back Bologna for a disappointing 1-1 draw at San Siro, but Andrea Ranocchia wasted a free header in stoppages.
The Nerazzurri were seeking a fourth consecutive Serie A victory, but Joao Miranda and Jeison Murillo were late injury absentees, while Marcelo Brozovic is still frozen out due to disciplinary reasons. The Rossoblu had won all their home games, but weren’t travelling well and missed Umar Sadiq, Federico Viviano, Alfred Gomis, Antonio Mirante and suspended Federico Di Francesco.
Inter had only lost twice in the last 20 meetings with Bologna, home and away. Incredibly, these both came since 2012 and were also in front of the home fans at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza.
The hosts had a very error-prone start, partly due to the late changes, and Geoffrey Kondogbia was the perfect example of that. He lost the ball in midfield and Simone Verdi’s fine footwork managed to set up Mattia Destro for an angled drive against his former club.
Bologna had the shock lead at San Siro and once again Inter went behind this season. Kondogbia seemed out of sorts and was hauled off in favour of Assane Gnoukouri, seemingly as a tactical decision.
Inter managed to get back on level terms with a moment of magic from Ivan Perisic, whose volley on an Antonio Candreva long ball was kept low and powerful across Angelo Da Costa into the far bottom corner.
Moments later it was almost 2-1 for the hosts, but Da Costa beat away a fierce Candreva volley from the penalty spot.
Candreva put in endless crosses from the right and Icardi volleyed wide, while there was a double save from close range on Icardi after an unlucky ricochet off Vasilis Torosidis.
Perisic continued to harass the Bologna defence, nodding one effort over after running rings around the opponents, but the score remained 1-1.
Gabigol was given his Serie A debut for the final 17 minutes to huge cheers at San Siro. Bologna remained dangerous on the counter, as Ranocchia flung himself in the path of a Verdi shot and on the counter Handanovic parried from Dzemaili’s angled drive.
Either side seemed likely to get the winning goal in the final 10 minutes, as Dzemaili wasted a counter and Icardi failed to meet Perisic’s cross.
With the last kick of the game, Perisic placed a perfect assist on to the head of Ranocchia, who turned the totally free header wide from six yards.
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