Radja Nainggolan Confirmed Out for ‘Several Weeks’ Following Injury in Inter’s Derby Win

?Inter have confirmed that their star midfielder Radja Nainggolan could be out for several weeks, after picking up an injury following the derby win over Milan.

Nainggolan was substituted after 30 minutes following a late challenge from Milan’s Lucas Biglia, who was subsequently booked. Inter secured a 1-0 win in the Derby della Madonnina thanks to a late Mauro Icardi winner, as he headed home in the 92nd minute.


A statement from Inter’s official website read: “After the match between ?Inter and ?Milan, Radja Nainggolan, who had to exit the field after 30 minutes yesterday, underwent medical tests this morning.

“The results confirmed that he has sprained his left ankle. The Inter midfielder’s condition will be reassessed in the coming weeks.”

The injury means that Nainggolan will miss Wednesday’s big Champions League match, as Inter travel to the Camp Nou to face ?Barcelona. Both teams are on maximum points after their opening two games, having previously beaten Tottenham and PSV.

SPAL v FC Internazionale - Serie A

The injury is a huge blow to I Nerazzurri, as they prepare for a run of fixtures that need to produce results should they challenge for the Serie A title, and prevent Juventus from winning an eighth straight Scudetto.

Nainggolan had just started his career at the San Siro, signing for €38 million from Roma in June. The Belgian international had a great start to his Inter campaign, scoring on his debut against Bologna in a 3-0 win.

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Inter also had injury concerns for midfielders Marcelo Brozovic and Ivan Perisic, who both played in Sunday’s derby win. However, Inter updated in the same statement: “Medical tests weren’t required for Marcelo Brozovic and Ivan Perisic, and they will be assessed on a day-by-day basis.”

Inter currently sit third in the Serie A table after securing their sixth win of the season in the derby victory. After their trip to Spain they travel to the Stadio Olimpico to face Lazio in the league on 29 October.

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Rafinha Admits He Felt Comfortable at Inter and Thought They Would Sign Him Permanently

Barcelona midfielder Rafinha has admitted that he was looking forward to remaining at Inter and thought they would have signed him on a permanent basis.

The 25-year-old Brazilian joined the Italian side on loan in January and took a real liking to the club. But he returned to Barca during the summer and has made three appearances for the La Liga champions so far this season.

FC Internazionale v US Sassuolo - Serie A

With ?La Blaugrana set to welcome the Nerazzurri to the Camp Nou on Wednesday for a Champions League showdown, Rafinha is excited to face some of his former Inter teammates.

Obviously,” he told Mundo Deportivo in an interview, when asked if will be a special occasion for him. “It was a big surprise when it touched us and a motivation for me. At the same time, I want to meet again with my colleagues and the people who welcomed me so well.”

Asked if he was hurt by the Serie A side not taking him on a permanent deal, he replied: “Painful is not the word. It was just a few months in which I was very well, regaining confidence after a long injury. 

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“For the treatment of my teammates and that of all the fans I felt very comfortable, they treated me like at home. Logically, as things happened, it was not expected.

“No. I knew they were happy inside the club and we thought they were going to exercise the purchase option, but it did not end up happening.”

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Crystal Palace Make Approach to Sign Former Brazilian Wonderkid After Striker’s Return to Form

Crystal Palace have reportedly made an approach to sign former Santos prodigy Gabriel Barbosa after the Brazilian striker’s return to goal-scoring form with his boyhood club.

Barbosa, commonly known as Gabigol, was signed by Italian giants Inter two years ago but struggled to adapt to his new surroundings. After being sent back to Santos on loan, the striker has rediscovered his goal-scoring touch and struck the back of the net 28 times in 47 appearances this season. 

Fluminense v Santos - Brasileirao Series A 2018

With the Brazilian’s loan expiring in December, ?UOL report that ?Inter are not interested in keeping the striker and have been locked in negotiations with Santos for a swap deal involving their other young prospects. 

However, the report has also suggested that Gabigol’s representatives, led by agent Kia Joorabchian, are working hard to take the forward to the ?Premier League and have identified ?Crystal Palace as the early frontrunners. 

Were Gabigol to arrive in England, he would follow in the footsteps of current ?West Ham midfielder Joao Mario, who is also represented by Joorabchian, and made his move from Inter to the Premier League earlier this year. 

The forward made his professional debut for Santos at the age of 16 and went on to make more than 150 appearances for the side. After a promising start to his club career and impressive performances in Brazil’s U23 side, the striker made his move to European football with ?Inter but struggled to recapture the form that marked his early rise.  

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Inter 1-0 AC Milan: Reports, Ratings & Reactions as Icardi Scores Last Gasp Winner

Inter stole the Milan derby from city rivals AC Milan as Mauro Icardi’s 91st minute header sealed all three points for I Nerazzurri in a dramatic ending at the San Siro.

??Inter had the first big chance of the match when captain Mauro Icardi bundled the ball into the net from close range, but it was correctly ruled offside by the officials after it took a touch off Matias Vecino on the way through to Icardi.

The game was heating up as both sides looked to claim a derby day victory. The first half was a physical battle that Inter were just about edging as both teams launched themselves into every 50-50, Lucas Biglia and Radja Nainggollan’s early collision showing this was not to be a game for the faint hearted.

SPAL v FC Internazionale - Serie A

It was AC Milan who next had a goal disallowed. Mateo Mussachio turned in Suso’s wonderful free kick from the right hand-side, but again it was correctly disallowed by the officials who were keeping a tight lid on the game.

The game began to pass by the two Milan giants, with Matteo Politano’s half volley the only real chance of the half. Suso had a tame shot easily saved by Samir Handanovic late in the game as the even contest fizzled out towards the end, with both teams looking set to walk away from the San Siro with a point.

That was until Icardi got onto the end of a wonderful Matias Vecino cross to send the San Siro into chaos as Inter nicked an unlikely winner in a game void of much quality.


Key Talking Point

Inter looked the better side for the majority of this game, but again showed weaknesses. Icardi was left isolated for much of the match, and with Nainggolan injured there was an opportunity for a Inter star to become a hero. Yet nobody seemed to want the glory that comes with a derby day victory as Inter looked flat for large periods of the game, despite being the better side – until Icardi stepped up to the plate. Inter are roaring in Serie A, having won five games on the spin as they continue to climb up the table.

Player Ratings
Starting XI: Handanovic (6), Vrsjalko (7), Skriniar (7), Asamoah (5), Vecino (6), Brozovic (8), Politano (6), Nainggolan (6), Perisic (7), Icardi (6)
Substitutes: Valero (4), Keita Balde (6)
Star Man: In a game where Radja Nainggollan was injured, Inter had a huge void in the middle of the park. Marcelo Brozovic did superbly to deputise for his injury stricken teammate, motoring up and down the park all game. He tired the Milan midfield quickly with his lung bursting runs and despite struggling with injury in the latter stages of the game, he still was able to put in a great performance.
Worst Player: Kwadwo Asamoah did not cover himself in glory in this Milan derby. He was often caught sleeping in possession and did very little to support the estranged Milan attack. A poor performance from a usually reliable player.

Key Talking Point

AC Milan weren’t pretty to watch, but they were effective in stopping Inter’s main threat. The game plan was clear – sit back, limit Icardi, and hit on the counter. It nearly worked to perfection, but they couldn’t quite hold out. 

Milan will no doubt be tired after such an energetic performance and this will surely leave a huge dent in their confidence. The result leaves Gennaro Gattuso’s men stuck in mid table, as a Champions League spot already looks unlikely.


Player Ratings

Starting XI: Donnarumma (6), Calabria (7), Musacchio (6), Romagnoli (8), Rodriguez (7), Kessie (7), Biglia (7), Bonaventura (5), Suso (6), Higuain (4), Calhanoglu (7)
Substitutes: Cutrone (7), Bakayoko (6),  Abate(N/A)
Star Man: Milan needed a hero at the back and Alessio Romagnoli was a rock at centre half. He denied Icardi several chances on goal, including one world class block in the first half as Icardi broke through on goal, and silenced him for most of the match. He captained the Milan side well and showed he is a true leader for his side. 
Worst Player: Milan were in dire need of a marksman upfront, and ?Gonzalo Higuaín failed to deliver anything in his first Milan derby. Starved of any real service, you could be forgiven for thinking Higuaín wasn’t there as he struggled to offer anything to the game.

Looking Ahead
Up next for Inter is a Champions League fixture at the Nou Camp as they take on ?Barcelona. Inter may fancy their chances with the news that Lionel Messi will miss the fixture with a broken arm. A win for Inter at Camp Nou would all but seal progress to the last 16 for  Luciano Spalletti’s men.
AC Milan also have a European clash in their next outing, hosting Real Betis at the San Siro in the Europa League. Milan are top of their group, and just like Inter, a victory over second placed rivals Betis would all but put them in the round of 32 stage of the Europa League, having won their opening two fixtures.

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Inter Tweet to Lionel Messi After Injury Rules Him Out of Wednesday’s Champions League Tie

?Inter have sent a classy message to Barcelona star Lionel Messi, after the Argentinian suffered a fractured arm which will rule him out of the Champions League clash between the two clubs on Wednesday.

In the 26th minute of Barcelona’s last match against Sevilla, Messi landed awkwardly on the ground and fractured the radial bone in his right arm, which will rule him out of action for around four weeks. As a result, he will likely miss both his side’s matches with Inter, whilst he will also miss Real Madrid’s visit to the Camp Nou on Sunday.

After ?Barcelona broke the news of ?Messi’s injury, ?Inter posted a reply to Barcelona on ?Twitter, expressing their disappointment at not being able to face Messi. 

The tweet read: “We are sorry for your injury and not being able to face you in the coming days. It is always an honour to play against the best.”

Wednesday’s match is an incredibly important one, with the two sides tied for first place in Group B. Both sides are currently undefeated in the Champions League, with victories coming at the expense of ?Tottenham Hotspur and PSV Eindhoven.

As a result, the two matches between Inter and Barcelona have the potential to be decisive in the final standings of the group, and Barcelona will have to cope without their star player.

Messi has been in electric form in this season’s Champions League. He has five goals from his opening two matches, and will surely be devastated to be forced into a period on the sidelines.

Tottenham Hotspur v FC Barcelona - UEFA Champions League Group B

In his absence, Barcelona will rely on the likes of ?Luis Suarez, ?Ousmane Dembele and Philippe Coutinho to step up and guide their team to victory during this crucial month without their captain.

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