Inter throw away a home lead again as Bologna maintain unbeaten streak with Serie A draw

Inter raced into a two-goal lead against Bologna on Matchday 8 but they couldn't hold on, conceding twice to drop points and potentially cede top spot in Serie A.

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STADIO GIUSEPPE MEAZZA (Milan): Inter squandered a two-goal lead and allowed Bologna to eventually snatch a point as a result of a 2-2 draw that saw the Nerazzurri once again drop points at home and after having been in front, like against Sassuolo.

Francesco Acerbi headed in the opener, which was followed by Lautaro Martinez‘s 10th league goal of the season in the space of seconds, but Riccardo Orsolini‘s penalty kept things in the balance and eventually allowed Joshua Zirkzee to equalise in the second half to earn the Rossoblu a draw that leaves them unbeaten for the seventh consecutive game.

The stalemate also means that Inter could lose the top spot in Serie A for the first time this season, should AC Milan win at Genoa later on Saturday.

Bologna still alive after Inter’s stunning start

Inter’s Lautaro Martinez and Nicolo Barella celebrate. [@Inter]

While Bologna produced the first scare of the afternoon, with Lewis Ferguson‘s strike from long-range fizzing just past the post, the Rossoblu seemed already under pressure in the opening exchanges, during which the Nerazzurri simply picked up from where they had left after their excellent second-half against Benfica in the Champions League.

Boosted by the usual roar from a massive home crowd, Inter began to bring players forward in numbers, although they eventually got their early reward from a set piece. Hakan Calhanoglu‘s corner was slightly flicked by Acerbi at the near post and it proved enough to beat Lukasz Skorupski after 11 minutes.

Less than one minute later, Martinez followed up with a wonderful strike that helped him leave behind the countless missed chances in the Champions LeagueMarcus Thuram laid the ball off to the Argentinian who took aim and hit a thunderous shot from outside the box that went in at the top far corner to double Inter’s lead.

It looked like a downhill road for the Nerazzurri by that point, but Lautaro’s body check on Ferguson was punished with a penalty following a VAR review, allowing Orsolini to pull one back for Bologna from the spot.

The frenzied opening part of the first half gradually made room for a slower phase, and despite the hosts seeming in control, it was clear that the tight margin was not enough to protect them from potential headaches.

Zirkzee helps Bologna to comeback draw

Bologna’s Joshua Zirkzee shoots against Inter.[@Bolognafc1909]

Following a quiet opening 45 minutes, Joshua Zirkzee gave proof of all his talent when he picked up a long ball from Ferguson just outside the box. Instead of setting up his teammates at his sides, the striker watched the Inter defenders retreat into their own box and calmly slotted the ball home to put things level.

It was a shock for Simone Inzaghi, who immediately brought on Alexis Sanchez, Carlos Augusto and Juan Cuadrado at once in the hope that fresh energies would help his side pile more pressure on the visitors, although their anxiety became more visible with every passing minute, making their play rushed and unprecise.

Lautaro‘s flick from a corner and Carlos Augusto‘s central shot were the only chances the Nerazzurri were able to produce in their final assault, which was not enough to avoid their first Serie A draw of the 2023/24 season.

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