Inter will look to seal Champions League football for next season when they host Empoli in their last game of the Serie A season.
Inter were in a comfortable position in their top four chases until last week. Napoli were the opponents, and Inter were comprehensively beaten 4-1 on the day. Mauro Icardi’s late penalty was a mere consolation as Napoli were comfortable winners in the end. Before that game, Inter were on a roll. They were unbeaten in seven games. Despite the loss to Napoli, they are in a strong position to finish in the top four of the Serie A.
Napoli are not the ones who are directly competing with them. Atalanta are level on points with them, but they are in third due to the tie-breaker. Milan are a point behind Inter and Roma are three behind. Both of them can catch Inter in theory, which is why Luciano Spalletti needs to get the win against Empoli. They can also finish in third place if Atalanta drop points in their game against Sassuolo.
Icardi did not start against Napoli, and Lautaro Martinez started as the striker. Icardi has had problems with the club due to issues off the pitch. But Spalletti needs his best squad for the last game, which means that Icardi could start. Behind him, the trio of Radja Nainggolan, Ivan Perisic, and Matteo Politano should retain their places. Martinez would have to be content with a spot on the bench.
As for Empoli, the game is a huge one for them as well. They were deep in the relegation battle a few weeks ago, but a recent run of results has changed the tide. Empoli have won their last three games which has lifted them up to 17th in the table. They are one point above Genoa who are in 18th place. To guarantee safety, Empoli need to win their game.
But that will be easier said than done against Inter. Meanwhile, Genoa will visit Fiorentina. That is the easier fixture considering that Fiorentina have lost five on the trot. Both these games will kick off at the same time, and the battle for relegation will be an intriguing one. Before the three-game winning streak, Empoli had not won for four games. In the last three games, Empoli have scored seven while conceding just two goals.
Inter dominate the head to head record, and they have won the last five meetings between the two sides. The reverse fixture ended in a 1-0 win for Inter. But Empoli were short of confidence at the time, which is not the case right now. They should give a better account of themselves.
Inter vs Empoli Prediction
Inter will go into the game as slight favorites. The home advantage also plays into their hands, and they should get a narrow win. The total goals should be more than 2.5 in this game. Despite Empoli’s best efforts, Inter should get the win to finish in the top four.