Inter Milan host a newly-promoted Parma on Saturday afternoon at San Siro, perhaps with one eye on a midweek Champions League clash with Tottenham. The last time these two sides faced each other was April 2015, with the Ducali having faced bankruptcy and subsequent demotion to Serie D shortly afterwards.
Since then, Parma – well-remembered for having twice won the UEFA Cup with a whole host of star players in the 1990s – have won promotion in every single season, returning to Serie A at the first possible opportunity.
That process has taken its toll on the squad however, with former Arsenal man Gervinho the only household name left among the players to feature for the Emilia-Romagnan outfit.
Meanwhile Inter go into this clash knowing that it is a must-win in front of their home supporters, the club having sold-out of season tickets in the summer. Such optimism stems from a big summer spend on some quality acquisitions by owners Suning in the transfer window.
Yet Coach Luciano Spalletti has yet to mould the new signings into a side that can achieve their potential. Many tipped the Nerazzurri to be the club to rival Juventus for the title this season, so now is the time for them to prove they were deserving of such high optimism.
The final result is likely to go Inter’s way, with odds of 2/7 offered by Betway reflecting this, but football betting fans should not expect Parma to simply roll over. Inter have shown a tendency to capitulate – losing 1-0 to Sassuolo on the opening day and letting a 2-0 home lead versus Torino slip away to an eventual 2-2 draw, before finally winning 3-0 versus Bologna.
Meanwhile, Parma have been resilient in their first three games back in the top-flight. After earning a 2-2 draw with well-established Serie A side Udinese, they fought back to 1-1 at home to Juventus - the champions having taken the lead in the second minute.
“Inter are a team that are capable of competing against Juventus,” Parma boss Roberto D’Aversa revealed to Sport Italia this week. “When we faced Juventus we showed that we can be a match for anyone and I hope the squad faces every match in the league in the same manner.”
They would go on to lose the match with Juve and their next fixture versus SPAL, but a bet on both teams to score would offer good value this time. Karamba offer 33/20 for a home win and both sides to score - a highly recommended option considering previous form.
Both sides have demonstrated a weakness for conceding goals, making a bet on over 2.5 in this game a sound wager to make. There have been over 2.5 in eight of Inter’s last nine matches at San Siro.
888 Sport offer a decent 3/5 on 2.5 goals being scored. The same bookmaker also offers 8/5 on over 3.5 goals in the match, but bear in mind that Inter are missing the injured forward Lautaro Martinez, and first choice striker Mauro Icardi is also said to be a doubt after international duty with Argentina.
Ivan Perisic is a player many will recognise from having played a starring role in Croatia’s journey to the World Cup final in the summer, the Nerazzurri winger scoring in that match as his side were defeated 4-2 by France.
The 29-year-old is showing no signs of fatigue from that momentous achievement since the new Serie A season has begun, starting from where he left off with a goal versus Torino, and a goal and an assist in Inter’s last match with Bologna.
He then fired in during Croatia’s 1-1 draw with Portugal in the UEFA Nations League match during the international break, and there is no reason to doubt that this scoring streak will continue, especially versus weaker opposition such as Parma.
With this in mind, Karamba offers 19/4 on Perisic to fire in first or last and 27/20 to score anytime, bets well worth making for a player currently at the very top of his game. If Mauro Icardi does miss out on the starting XI as expected, you can expect long-time Manchester United target Perisic to step up to the plate.
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