International Champions Cup Preview: Inter Milan

Inter Milan, a Serie A powerhouse that has fallen on hard times recently, is a team with everything to prove and will be coming to the United States later this month to compete in the 2013 International Champions Cup.

Here’s a preview:

Schedule

August 1, 2013: Chelsea vs Inter, Indianapolis (Lucas Oil Stadium) 8:00pm ET

August 4, 2013: Loser of Chelsea vs Inter will play loser of AC Milan vs Valencia or winner of Chelsea vs Inter will play winner of AC Milan vs Valencia , New York (MetLife Stadium) 4:00pm ET or 6:30pm ET

August 6, 2013: Opponent to be determined, Miami (Sun Life Stadium), 6:30pm ET or 9pm ET

August 7, 2013: Opponent to be determined, Miami (Sun Life Stadium), 6:30pm ET or 9pm ET

What to Expect

Inter Milan may not be at their mightiest at the moment, but with new manager Walter Mazzarri at the helm, Inter hope to correct last season’s 9th place finish. Their last campaign saw a myriad of formations employed, with the squad undergoing no fewer than 10 changes to its tactical plan in its search for a winning formula. Their attack suffered from losses due to injury, but nevertheless the team showed a flair for quick counters down the wings, and the team’s passing accuracy ranked 4th in Serie A. Their defense, though stacked with big names, faltered as well. Expect the squad to understand that their frailty needs correcting, and despite a new manager and new signings, look for them to do absolutely everything possible to embarrass cross-town rivals AC Milan, who have the potential to meet Inter in New York for an off-shore semi final derby.

Who to Watch For

Inter Milan have one of the best young center backs in Europe in Andrea Ranocchia. The 25 year old is as comfortable on the ball as he is in the air, and even netted 2 goals while assisting another last season – a solid defender in every sense of the word and a better passer than most Italians in that position. Famous names like Zanetti, Cassano, Cambiasso and Guarin also figure, but keep an eye out for 19 year old central midfielder Mateo Kovacic. The Croatian teen, who joined just this January, wears the No.10 shirt for Inter, and performed admirably in his 11 appearances for the club last year. Successfully completing over 90% of his passes and putting in at least one MotM performance, he gives Inter fans much to be excited about. Watch for Inter to rely on through balls from the starlet to another promising youngster, new striker Mauro Icardi.

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