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Inter v Chievo: Felipe calls for fight until the end

Inter defender Felipe has urged his team-mates to keep working ahead of Sunday’s home clash with Chievo, as their late push for a European spot continues.

The San Siro outfit have belatedly hit form with a five-match unbeaten run, highlighted by a win at home to third-placed Roma last weekend, lifting them to eighth in the table.

Roberto Mancini’s men have struggled all season but are just two points adrift of a possible UEFA Europa League berth with five matches to play.

Their latest success was a 2-1 win at a nine-man Udinese on Tuesday, with Mauro Icardi and Lukas Podolski netting for the visitors.

Inter had trouble closing the game out, though, and Felipe – who spent more than 10 years at Udinese earlier in his career – hopes his team-mates learn from it.

“We managed the game poorly [against Udinese] and must take responsibility for that,” he said. “Let’s focus on our next game now.

“We want to qualify for Europe and we’ll keep trying until the end. I’ll try to be ready when I’m needed.”

Icardi’s goal took him to 18 for the season, two behind Serie A top scorer Carlos Tevez. Icardi has been a rare shining light for Inter this term and has scored in three of Inter’s last four matches.

He could pair up with fellow Argentina forward Paulo Dybala at the Italian giants next season. 

Dybala, 21, is enjoying an excellent campaign at Palermo and Inter vice-president Javier Zanetti said in the build-up to this clash that they would make a move to sign the forward in the close-season.

The high-profile acquisitions of Xherdan Shaqiri and Podolski generated plenty of attention at Inter in January, but it is fair to say both have failed to live up to the hype in their short careers at the club so far.

Inter host a Chievo side who are on a four-match unbeaten run and sit 12th in the table. Rolando Maran’s men will have their eye on a top-half finish and will take plenty of encouragement from their last away fixture.

That occasion saw Chievo come from behind to earn a point in a 1-1 draw at second-placed Lazio. Chievo beat Inter last season, too, with Victor Obinna’s late double giving them a 2-1 home success.

Inter won the earlier meeting this campaign, though, as strikes from Mateo Kovacic and Andrea Ranocchia proved the difference.

Fri 1 May, 2015
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