Serie A Preview: Chievo vs Inter

Claudio Villa

The Nerazzurri look to close out the campaign on a high note, with a spot in the Europa League already sealed…

This is the end, beautiful friend. This is the end, my only friend, the end. 

It's truly the end of an era as Inter could bid adieu to four esteemed veterans following Sunday's clash with Chievo. 

Javier Zanetti is retiring and will assume a director's role at the club while Walter Samuel, Diego Milito and Esteban Cambiasso will likely play their last match for the Nerazzurri before heading out to pastures new.

The baton will now be passed to the likes of youngsters Mauro Icardi and Mateo Kovacic to lead the charge in the future.

Inter attained its pre-season goal of clinching a place in the Europa League with a 4-1 win over Lazio last weekend so there is no real urgency to pick up all the points in Verona.

The old phrase, 'playing for pride' rings especially true in this encounter as Chievo has already secured Serie A survival following its 1-0 victory over Cagliari.

So I will spare you the tired 'we need a win to close out the term in order to build momentum for next season' cliché because this will be just a glorified scrimmage for both teams.

Still, we won't see our beloved Inter play a competitive match for a few months and the occasion will still be something to savour, especially with the old guard making their last stand for the club.

So, let's hope Milito nets a brace and Zanetti makes one of his trademark runs down the right flank.

Maybe Cambiasso can harass the referee for the full 90 minutes and Walter Samuel can pick up a yellow card from the bench, you know for old times' sake before we close this chapter and begin a new one.

THE VITALS

Date: Sunday, May 18

Time: 2:45 EST

Venue: Marc'Antonio Bentegodi

BATTLE DOSSIER

Inter Probable Formation: 3-5-2: Carrizo; Andreolli, Ranocchia, Rolando; Zanetti, Taider, Cambiasso, Kovacic, Alvarez; Milito, Botta

Chievo Probable Formation: 4-3-1-2: Agazzi; Frey, Cesar, Dainelli, Drame; Guana, Radovanovic, Guarente; Hetemaj; Thereau, Paloschi

Unavailable For Duty: Juan Jesus and Walter Samuel will miss out on Sunday's festivities with injuries while Rodrigo Palacio is suspended.

Operation It's On Like Flying Donkey Kong: The objective is to close out the campaign on a victorious note while avoiding any casualties.

Enemy Of The State: Alberto Paloschi is in the midst of a breakout season for Chievo, scoring 13 league goals, which is one shy of his total from the last three years. He is also a former Milan striker and that gives him added incentive to find the back of the net on Sunday.

Fear Factor: 3: Chievo is as frightening as cuddling with your significant or not-so-significant other after a righteous romp. The deed is done, the objective is complete and now it's time to just go through the motions.

Medal Of Honor: Our senatori, the old warhorses who have been in countless battles and came out on top more often than not over the years. They will be sorely missed for all of their contributions and loyal service to the club.

Likely Outcome: The final score is not important in the grand scheme of things, but it would still be nice to conclude the season with another good result on the road.

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