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Antonio Candreva strike gives Internazionale win over Southampton

Candreva strike gives Internazionale win over Southampton

20/10/2016 at 23:15

Europa League, Group K, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza - Internazionale 1 (Candreva 67) Southampton 0

Southampton will wonder how they came away from the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza with nothing as 10-man Internazionale claimed a 1-0 win in the Europa League.

Frank de Boer's side, without a point in the group following defeats to Hapoel Be'er Sheva and Sparta Prague, produced a classic Italian display to take all three points despite only managing one shot on target all game.

Antonio Candreva netted the only goal of the match with a brilliant lashed finish into the top corner of Fraser Forster's goal from Davide Santon's 67th-minute cross, and from then on Inter put men behind the ball and tried to kill the game off.

Inter midfielder Marcelo Brozovic was shown a second yellow card in the 77th minute, but Claude Puel's men were unable to take advantage of the extra man, with Nerazzurri goalkeeper Samir Handanovic making two brilliant saves to deny Virgil van Dijk and Charlie Austin in the final moments.

Sparta Prague top the group with six points from three games, with Hapoel Be'er Sheva and Southampton both on four points, and Inter, who travel to St Mary's for the return fixture in two weeks' time, prop up the group with three points from their three matches.

TALKING POINT: Can Inter upset the odds again in Southampton?

Inter stars Joao Mario, Gabigol, Geoffrey Kondogbia and Stevan Jovetic are all unavailable for the Europa League under Financial Fair Play regulations, while midfielder Marcelo Brozovic will also be missing at St Mary's after his red card at the San Siro.

But Frank de Boer's makeshift European side showed enough heart against Southampton to suggest they can turn their disastrous start to the season round, and qualify for the last 32 of the competition. Southampton may go chasing the win on matchday four, and Inter have proven that they can soak up pressure and take advantage of any half-chances that comes the way of their attacking trident of Antonio Candreva, Mauro Icardi and Eder.

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MAN OF THE MATCH

Sam McQueen (Southampton) The 21-year-old only made his Saints debut on Sunday, coming on as a second-half substitute in the 3-1 Premier League win over Burnley at St Mary's but, with Matt Targett, Cedric Soares, Jeremy Pied and Ryan Bertrand all injured, the academy graduate was given his first start in the San Siro.

The Southampton-born defender was not fazed by the occasion at all, and was a constant attacking threat down the left flank when the Saints counter-attacked.

PLAYER RATINGS

Inter Milan: Handanovic 8, Nagatomo 7, Miranda 7, Murillo 7, Santon 6, Gnoukouri 5, Medel 6, Brozovic 6, Candreva 7, Icardi 6, Eder 6. Subs. Ansaldi 6, Perisic 6, D'Ambrosio 6.

Southampton: Forster 7, Martina 7, Yoshida 6, Van Dijk 7, McQueen 8, Hojberg 7, Romeu 7, Ward-Prowse 7, Tadic 7, Long 6, Rodriguez 6.Subs: Austin 7, Boufal 6, Davis 6.

Southampton's Dusan Tadic in action with Inter Milan's Gary Medel

Southampton's Dusan Tadic in action with Inter Milan's Gary MedelReuters

KEY FACTS

Southampton have failed to score in seven of their last eight European away matches (including qualifiers).

Inter Milan's victory over Southampton sees them avoid the unwanted distinction of a record fifth straight defeat in Europe.

KEY MOMENTS

4' – CHANCE! Icardi wins the ball following a poor backpass from Yoshida, but the Argentine can only backheel the ball off Forster. Saints then clear the corner.

27' – CHANCE! Southampton break quickly, but Handanovic does brilliantly to flick McQueen's cross from the left away from Rodriguez, and Nagatomo clears the loose ball off the line.

30' – CHANCE! Icardi is bundled off the ball by Romeu, and Southampton then again break at speed through Tadic, but Martina gets caught in two minds and his effort is half shot, half shot and wide.

38' – CHANCE! Martina gets the ball down the right, but his cross flicks off Munillo under pressure from Long and just evades Rodriguez. Icardi heads clear Ward-Prowse's corner.

55' – CHANCE! Austin shoots wide on the turn first time following good link up play with Rodriguez.

67' – GOAL! Inter Milan 1-0 Southampton. Candreva slams the ball into the top corner from 15 yards from Santon's low cross from the left. That came from nowhere!

77' – RED CARD: Marcelo Brozovic is sent off for a late challenge on Hjojberg. Inter are now down to ten men for the final 13 minutes.

82' – SAVE! From the angled free-kick, van Dijk sees a volley brilliantly blocked by Handanovic. But an inch either side, that would have been the equaliser.

88' - OFF THE LINE! Ward-Prowse's corner find van Dijk, who sees his header cleared off the line by Nagatomo.

MATCH IN A TWEET

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