Serie A - Inter ride luck to win at Genoa

Fri, 29 Oct 19:10:00 2010

Sulley Muntari's speculative 30-yard shot prompted a gaffe from Eduardo and sealed all three points for Internazionale in a 1-0 win at Genoa's Stadio Luigi Ferraris stadium in Serie A.

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For much of the game Genoa were the league champions' equals, and the result might have been different had Davide Santon received more than a yellow card for his high-booted challenge which caught Chico in the head in the first half.

Genoa had their opportunities but, once behind, they struggled against a disciplined Inter side who go second as a result of the victory.

Both sides began well as the first half started on a cool evening in Genoa, but it was the hosts who started to control the game, creating more chances and looking the more threatening side.

Domenico Criscito was a handful on the left hand side, while Luca Toni looked assured as the attacking spearhead.

Toni tested Julio Cesar with a powerful shot which required a full-stretch save, while moments later Giandomenico Mesto might have done better with an angled shot.

Samuel Eto'o, who has been in irresistible form this campaign, then missed a golden chance for Inter after Sulley Muntari, himself an early replacement for the injured Esteban Cambiasso, played a sumptuous cross into his path.

That rare miss from the Cameroonian after half an hour seemed to galvanise Genoa, who pushed on in search of a goal.

And they really should have scored one through Marco Rossi, whose finish after Chico's accurate cross was poor, slipping agonisingly wide of goal.

The home side dominated without breaking the deadlock, and were punished for it in the third minute of stoppage time when an error of judgement from Eduardo allowed Muntari's hopeful long-range shot to slip straight past him. The ball bounced awkwardly in front of the goalkeeper, but the horrified silence of the boisterous home crowd spoke volumes for his mistake on the stroke of half-time.

Genoa looked further away from a second goal as the half progressed, and Inter contained their opponents without showing too much by way of attacking intent.

The biggest concern for Rafael Benitez was the loss of goalkeeper Julio Cesar midway through the second period, who pulled up with a hamstring problem and had to be replaced by Luca Castellazzi.

Castellazzi, formerly of Genoa's fierce city rivals Sampdoria, came on to a chorus of boos from the home fans, but looked assured when called upon in the latter stages as the hosts rallied once again.

Matteo Destro snatched at a chance for Genoa late on, when he had much more time than he appreciated to place a strike, while moments later Criscito's well-struck volley flashed wide of the far post.

The best chance to claim a point fell to 17-year-old substitute Richmond Boakye but, having created a little room for his shot, flashed his effort high and wide of the goal.

Inter weathered the storm and six minutes of injury time, and will be satisfied to have come away from the game with all three points.

Genoa, meanwhile, remain stranded in mid-table after having suffered their first home defeat in five Serie A games.

Mark Patterson / Eurosport

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