Bologna face off against Inter on Sunday afternoon. The last time the two sides met, Inter needed a cheap penalty to manage a draw. Bologna were the best side on that day, and if they replicate that performance, then a positive result is definitely achievable.
After the loss in the derby dell’Appennino last weekend, Bologna are still occupying 12th. The team is now in a bit of no-man’s-land with four points up to Fiorentina in 11th, and three points down to Genoa in 13th. But, not a lot of points separate La Viola from those above, and a win can therefore put Bologna within touching-distance from those teams. Given that the teams behind Bologna, like Cagliari, Chievo and Genoa are creeping closer, Bologna can not afford to drop too many points without worrying about dropping down the table.
The game against Fiorentina saw Bologna go back to a trait we’ve seen in quite a few games this season. The passing was terrible, which was the main reason for why Fiorentina got it all too easy, especially in the second half of the game. Almost every player misplaced their passes in that abysmal second half, and improvement is needed if Bologna are to trouble Inter.
Inter started the season in brilliant fashion, and for a long time it looked as the Serie A was a three-legged race, with them, Napoli and Juventus. However, they’re now experiencing a terrible run of form. They’ve gone eight games without a win, a run that stretches back to their draw against Juventus on December 9th. During this streak, they’ve lost against Udinese and Sassuolo, as well as drawn against the likes of Crotone and Spal. They now find themselves fifteen points behind Napoli in first place, and their season is now all about getting a top four spot, so that they can return to Europe at last.
During the last couple of days there have been some rumours regarding the team. The game against La Viola saw Roberto Donadoni utilize Mattia Destro alongside Rodrigo Palacio up front, with Blerim Dzemaili as the trequartista in an unorthodox 4-3-1-2 formation. The rumours are that Donadoni will go back to the regular 4-3-3 formation, and that Destro will have to be satisfied with a seat on the bench. Instead of him, Donadoni is rumoured to go with Palacio as the striker, with Federico Di Francesco and Riccardo Orsolini on either side of the veteran. This would mean that Orsolini would get to start his first game for the club. This formation is what has worked best all year, and it will be interesting to see how new boy Orsolini does, if he starts the game.
With the two young, Italian wingers coming in, Godfred Donsah is the most likely midfielder to drop to the bench, while Giancarlo Gonzalez is expected to step back into the line-up at the expense of Sebastien De Maio.
Bologna (4-3-3): Mirante; M’baye, Gonzalez, Helander, Masina; Dzemaili, Pulgar, Poli; Orsolini, Palacio, Di Francesco
Inter (4-2-3-1): Handanovic; D’Ambrosio, Skriniar, Miranda, Dalbert; Valero, Vecino; Candreva, Brozovic, Perisic; Éder
The game will undoubtedly be tough even though Inter have been struggling for quite some time. The quality in their team is very high, and it’s only a matter of time before they find their form again. However, if Bologna can replicate their performance from the last game between the two teams, a positive result is possible.
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Photo: Bologna FC