Inter Milan v Southampton: Saints can heap more pressure on De Boer
All is not well at Inter Milan ahead of Southampton’s visit in the Europa League on Thursday night and the solid Saints could well leave the iconic setting of the San Siro with a positive result.
The hosts are favourites for this clash, as you would expect, but they look vulnerable and definitely opposable at quotes of 5/4 (2.25) with Paddy Power. Frank De Boer has been linked with several high profile Premier League jobs in the past but he is under pressure in Milan after a distinctly average start to the campaign.
The Serie A side sit 11th in the table having lost their previous three competitive matches in all competitions. Far from providing a safe haven, European competition seems to make the situation worse for the home side, who went down 2-0 to Hapoel Be’er Sheva and 3-1 to Sparta Prague in their first two matches to leave them bottom of Group K.
Mauro Icardi, who had been something of a shining light for Inter in the early part of the season, released a book recently which has riled up sections of the club’s most hardened support. The Ultras have made their feelings known towards the Argentine, who’s position at the clubs seems to hang in the balance despite signing a new contract recently.
So, Southampton come into this game as the outsiders but should they be overlooked by the betting public? There is the obvious caveat that Claude Puel may well rotate his squad with the league game with Manchester City at the weekend in mind, but four points from their opening two games suggest the visitors will not be overrun. They’re 2/1 (3.0) to win and 12/5 (3.40) to take a share of the spoils.
One concern for the Saints is their lack of cover at full back, where Matt Targett limped off against Burnley on Saturday while the team were already without first choice defender Ryan Bertrand, leaving Sam McQueen to deputise on his home debut, but the former Southend United loanee looked perfectly confident slotting into his unfamiliar surroundings.
The penalty in their 3-1 win over the Clarets was Southampton’s first goal conceded in seven matches though, that defensive solidity will surely stand them in good stead against a team in crisis on and off the pitch.
Southampton fans will travel in their droves to this game with a over 5,000 tickets sold and with a potentially toxic atmosphere awaiting the home side, it could quickly turn into a tricky evening for De Boer and his under pressure squad. Southampton certainly have the mentality to take this in their stride, keep things tight and potentially come away with something from the game.
At 6/5 (2.20) in the Draw No Bet market with Paddy Power they look a worthy bet. This will see stakes returned if the game ends all square while still offering plentiful returns if the English side can leave with three points.