A place in the 2020 Europa League final is at stake as Inter Milan take on Shakhtar Donetsk in Dusseldorf on Monday. Both teams have impressed en route to the semis, but there’s no doubt who the favourites are.
Where and when: Merkur Spiel-Arena – 17 August, kick-off 20:00
Where you can see Inter vs. Shakhtar: BT Sport
Last time: These teams last met in the qualifying rounds for the Champions League back in 2005, with Inter progressing to the tournament proper courtesy of a 3-1 aggregate win.
Inter v Shakhtar Predictions and Preview
Alvaro Recoba, Obafemi Martins and Adriano scored Inter’s three goals when these teams met in a two-legged tie 15 years ago. Antonio Conte’s attack isn’t far off that sort of quality, although it’s the performance of the Nerazzurri’s defence which is likely to be more crucial against the free-scoring Shakhtar Donetsk on Monday night.
This Europa League semi-final takes place over just the one leg and on neutral ground due to the coronavirus outbreak, but the circumstances have created a unique, intriguing event which is nearing its conclusion. Both of these teams would love to reach the final, with Inter aiming to build on a reasonable season and Shakhtar looking to add to their Ukrainian Premier League crown.
Inter only ended up a point behind Serie A champions Juventus, although the Old Lady took their foot off the gas once the destination of the scudetto became obvious. A European trophy would be another crucial building block for Conte as he looks to challenge Juve next season and install some confidence into his players.
|Our Eurotips||Odds||Free bets||Bookie|
Inter to win and BTTS
Inter to win 2-1
Over 5.5 goals
The Nerazzurri certainly have the attacking players to cause their opponents lots of problems, with Romelu Lukaku netting in both of their knockout ties in Germany so far. Lautaro Martinez is yet to score, and there’s more to come from the exciting Argentine. Inter have scored exactly two goals in each of their last four matches, with only Atalanta scoring more in Serie A this season.
Shakhtar, meanwhile, bagged 80 goals in 32 league games this season, at an average of exactly 2.5 per game. The Miners have plundered seven goals in their two Europa League matches so far this month, including their 4-1 victory over Basel in the quarters, where the Swiss outfit netted a 92nd-minute consolation with the result in no doubt.
Luis Castro’s side are a real threat, and if they manage to get an early goal, could easily pick Inter apart on the break if the Italians push forward. Even so, the Nerazzurri squad is filled with the greater quality and they start as the odds-on favourites for the win at 11/14. Shakhtar are 18/5, while the draw after 90 minutes is 3/1. With extra-time and penalties possible, you can back Inter to progress to the final at 2/5, with Shakhtar priced at 9/4.
One to watch for Inter: Romelu Lukaku has notched 31 goals so far in his debut season for Inter, and he is the 3/1 favourite to break the deadlock in this game.
One to watch for Shakhtar: Junior Moraes has also been in fine goalscoring form with four goals in his last three games and 26 for the season. He is 6/1 for the first goal on Monday.
Long shot: With so much attacking quality on show, this game has the potential for goals. You can back over 5.5 goals here at 19/2, while those odds rise to 47/1 if you add underdogs Shakhtar as the winners.