Inter-Genoa Preview: Nerazzurri hope to start Mazzarri era with a bang

Inter coach Walter Mazzarri will be hoping his new club can make a winning start to their Serie A campaign against Genoa on Sunday.

The former Napoli boss took over from Andrea Stramaccioni in May after Inter slumped to a disappointing ninth-place finish in Serie A last season. 

Mazzarri has overseen wholesale changes since assuming control of the 18-time Italian champions, bringing in several new players as he aims to return Inter to the upper echelons of the table.

Inter enjoyed success in their first competitive game of the season, cruising past second-tier side Cittadella 4-0 in the Coppa Italia last Sunday, thanks in part to a double from forward Rodrigo Palacio. 

However, they are likely to face a slightly more difficult challenge against Fabio Liverani’s Genoa, even if the Grifone only narrowly avoided relegation to Serie B last term.

Genoa have also recruited heavily in the transfer window to try and improve their fortunes this time around, signing right-back Sime Vrsaljko from Dinamo Zagreb, as well as experienced centre-back Alessandro Gamberini on loan from Napoli.

Liverani will be hoping that his new charges can help Genoa go one better than last season, when they secured a 1-1 draw at San Siro, Esteban Cambiasso’s late goal winning a point for the hosts after Ciro Immobile – who has since departed for Torino – had opened the scoring.

Inter historically have a strong record against Genoa, and are undefeated against the Liguria club in their last 15 matches in all competitions.

They will attempt to maintain that streak without striker Diego Milito (knee), who is still on the sidelines due to an injury sustained in the UEFA Europa League in February, while Walter Samuel (thigh), Cristian Chivu (foot) and Javier Zanetti (Achilles) are also all unavailable.

Meanwhile, Genoa who will have to cope without suspended duo Giovanni Marchese – banned for three months for match-fixing offences – and Davide Biondini.

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