Inter travel to Verona on Sunday afternoon knowing that three points are vital versus Chievo as they compete with Roma and Lazio for a place in the Champions League next term. The Nerazzurri are just one point behind those rivals in the table, but face the defensively determined Flying Donkeys who have already held both Napoli and Roma to 0-0 draws this term.
They owe a lot to their veteran goalkeeper Stefano Sorrentino, whose saves have kept them in matches on countless occasions, however Chievo sit just three points above the drop zone with five games remaining.
Relegation would see them compete in Serie B next season for the first time in ten years a shock for many football betting fans considering during this time Chievo have earned a reputation for finishing in mid-table. However in 2017/18 it looks like their struggles could go right down to the wire.
An over-reliance on striker Mauro Icardi has seen Inter struggle to score of late, a staggering 46% of their 54 goals coming from the Argentine. He has fired in a total of 25 strikes this season, the first in a Nerazzurri shirt to do so since Zlatan Ibrahimovic in 2008/09 and Ronaldo before him during the 1997/98 campaign.
As a result, there have been under 2.5 goals scored in eight of Inter's last nine domestic away games with Inter failing to score in their last three away from San Siro. Meanwhile, Chievo have dropped lower and lower in the standings after failing to win 17 of their last 19 Serie A matches.
It may therefore be worth considering having a bet on a 0-0 draw, available at 9.50 with Bet365, who also offer odds of 5.50 on the match being a draw at both half time and full time.
Despite those previous struggles, Inter’s last match saw them finally get back into good form, running out 4-0 winners against Cagliari on Tuesday evening. This could render their previous performances somewhat irrelevant and they will arrive at the Bentegodi knowing that history is firmly on their side.
The Flying Donkeys lost their last match versus Inter 5-0 at San Siro, and have traditionally struggled versus this opponent. Four from the last six matches between the pair have ended in a win for the Beneamata, with the latter outscoring them by ten goals to three on those six occasions.
Furthermore, Chievo – who recently were thought to be considering sacking Coach Rolando Maran – have failed to win 17 of their last 19 Serie A matches and take on a Nerazzurri side who have kept a clean sheet in seven of their last eight league games.
As a result of all those factors, 888sport’s odds of 2.23 for Inter to win while also keeping a clean sheet is well worth a look, a result that would also potentially have those aforementioned ramifications on both the chase for Champions League places and the relegation battle.
Ivan Perisic is currently in a run of good form in his role on the left of the trio behind Icardi in Coach Luciano Spalletti’s 4-2-3-1. The Croatian has scored ten goals and provided eight assists in the current campaign, and netted in midweek versus Cagliari.
Furthermore, in Inter’s last three wins Perisic has fired in three goals and provided two assists for his team-mates, while he notably netted a hat-trick in his team’s last meeting with the Veronese outfit. Since joining Inter he has scored more versus Chievo than any other team in the division, proving that he will certainly be looking forward to this match-up.
“Every game is crucial, but we all want to reach our objective, which is the Champions League, and we’ll do everything to qualify,” the winger told Inter’s matchday magazine. “We’re doing well, but we can still do better. We’re getting to know each other more and, of course, our understanding increases with each game.
Playing with your teammates, seeing each other every day and understanding what you can play for is important.” Taking his form into account, it is certainly worth considering a bet on Perisic to score first versus Chievo and is available at 7.00 with Bet365.
Chievo Verona (4-3-1-2): Sorrentino; Cacciatore, Bani, Tomovic, Jaroszynski; Castro, Radovanovic, Rigoni; Giaccherini; Inglese, Stepinski
Inter Milan (4-2-3-1): Handanovic, Cancelo, Skriniar, Miranda, D’Ambrosio; Borja Valero, Brozovic; Karamoh, Rafinha, Perisic; Icardi