Roberto Mancini is set to be absent from the touchline when Inter attempt to end a worrying Serie A slump at home to Chievo after the coach was handed a one-match ban for his outburst in the Milan derby.
Inter fell to a disappointing 3-0 defeat against bitter rivals AC Milan in Sunday’s contest, with Alex, Carlos Bacca and M’Baye Niang securing bragging rights for the red and black side of the city.
Mancini felt the result was not a fair reflection of the match and was sent to the stands following fierce protestations when new signing Eder was not awarded a penalty following a challenge from Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.
The former Manchester City boss was subsequently hit with a one-match ban and a €5,000 fine for “disrespectful expressions” towards officials, an “insulting epithet” at the fourth official and an “insulting gesture” aimed at supporters.
It could have been a different story for Inter had Mauro Icardi not missed a penalty at 1-0, and the defeat means they have now failed to win their past four league matches, leaving them nine points adrift of leaders Napoli in fourth.
They have little time to lick their wounds, though, with Chievo visiting San Siro on Wednesday and Mancini is refusing to press the panic button.
“This is a delicate moment but the only thing we can do is feel bad about it and roll our sleeves up,” Mancini told the club’s official website.
“We’ll come through this together. I’m convinced we’ll manage it – I’m sure of it. When things aren’t going well the doubts are always going to creep in, especially in young sides like ours.
“The only way you come through situations like this is by keeping your chin up and giving your all. We need to remember we have the quality to do that and to maintain the belief we’ve earned.”
The clash with Chievo, who lost the reverse fixture 1-0 in September, perhaps presents Inter with an ideal opportunity to return to winning ways.
Rolando Maran’s side are 12th in Serie A but travel to Milan on the back of respective 4-1 and 4-0 defeats against Lazio and champions Juventus.
Chievo have been hit by a series of injuries in recent weeks with the likes of Simone Pepe, Perparim Hetemaj and Alessandro Gamberini sidelined.
“The thing I regret most is that all of these absences have arrived at the same time,” Maran said after Sunday’s loss to Juve.
“But whoever takes the field must give their best. Against Juve, in spite of everything that has happened, we tried to stay in the game until the end.”
Key Opta stats:
– Chievo have not won away at Inter in Serie A since their first visit in December 2001, drawing four and losing eight since then.
– Inter and Chievo have collected the same number of points over the last six Serie A matches (5).
– Conceding three goals in their derby loss to AC Milan ensured that Inter no longer have the best defence in Serie A this season (17 conceded, two more than Juventus).
– Rolando Maran’s side have conceded 14 goals in their last six games, having shipped just 16 in their opening 16 league games this season.
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