The quarter-finals of the Italian Cup kicks off tonight with an exciting confrontation between Milan and Inter Milan in the “Derby of Fury”, as both teams seek to shake off the dust that they faced in the league last week.
The quarter-final matches will resume on Wednesday evening with the meeting between Atalanta and Lazio, and Juventus with SPAL (second division), to be concluded Thursday with the meeting between Napoli, the title holder, with Spezia.
Milan, the Italian league leaders, suffered a 3-0 defeat at home to Atlanta in the 19th stage of the competition, and second-placed Inter Milan tied at the same time with its host Udinese in a negative way.
Milan maintained its position in the lead, just two points ahead of Inter Milan, with its arrival in the middle of the Italian League journey, but it needs to restore confidence after receiving its second defeat during this month, as it had also lost to Juventus 1-3.
“We missed a lot of things in this match, we had a bad day. I don’t want to find excuses, now it is important that we regain our energies and wait for the next match to restore balance after this defeat,” veteran star Zlatan Ibrahimovic said after the defeat.
Milan misses the efforts of goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma to stop, and playmaker Hakan Calhanoglu due to his infection with the new Corona virus, and Ibrahimovic is expected to lead Milan’s attack, and newcomer Mario Mandzukic is expected to participate for a time longer than the 20 minutes he played during the Atlanta match.
Inter Milan, bemoaning the missed opportunity to win against Udinese and equalizing Milan’s points, is looking forward to taking advantage of Milan’s morale decline and qualifying at its expense in the Cup.
Inter Milan coach Antonio Conte highlighted the lack of accuracy, noting that this resulted in wasting a number of chances against Udinese.
“Of course we will evaluate things and see who is recovering better and deserving to participate. We will not take it lightly and try to win, as we always do,” Conte said.
“We will not set any limits for ourselves, but we will have to do some calculations in order to reach the required balance,” he added.
In addition to the league, the Cup is the other goal for Inter Milan in the current season that saw it exit the Champions League, a competition that saw Juventus, Atlanta and Lazio qualify for the playoffs, while Milan and Napoli are competing in the European League.
Earlier this week, the Italian League also witnessed a shock to Napoli (the cup holders), who lost to Verona 1-3, after 4 days of their defeat by Juventus with two unanswered goals in the Super Cup match.