Who will be the danger men for Inter against Tottenham Hotspur?

Inter Milan

A string of injuries has left Inter with a depleted squad for the first leg of their Europa League knock out tie with Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane, but there is still plenty of talent available to Andrea Strammacioni.

Fans of both Tottenham Hotspur and Inter might both rue tha fact that the last time the two clubs met, it was in the Champions League group stages, rather than in the Europa League. Inter in particular have had a tricky couple of years, with their Champions League winning side slowly being dismantled, culminating in Wesley Sneijder's ignominious exit in January.

However both can now say they are looking up, with talented young managers at the helm, and a fair chance both could be in the Champions League next season. For the match on Thursday night, Inter's manager has been hamstrung by a slew of injuries, and a recall for the troublesome Antonio Cassano is an indication of how few options going forward the Italian side has.

Rodrigo Palacio will be the most likely man to grab the away goal for Inter, with the Argentine coming to London off the back of a brace against Catania at the weekend. As Cassano will also feature at some stage, he will clearly be a threat to Tottenham Hotspur's back line as for all his faults off the field, he is a fine player. Inter will likely set up mainly on the counter attack, and Palacio will be a threat in this regard if Andre Villas-Boas opts for the experience but hardly nippy pair of William Gallas and Brad Friedel.

The twin Argentines of Ricardo Alvarez and Ezequiel Schelotto will also provide an attacking threat from a deeper position, whilst in the centre another Argentinian player - Esteban Cambiasso - will be tasked with disrupting Mousa Dembele's passing game as well as helping out with monitoring Gareth Bale at the back. Cambiasso is an excellent player with a wealth of experience, and Inter will be relying on him to ensure they don't lose control of the match in the centre.

At the back Andrea Ranocchia is an injury doubt for Stramacioni's side, and it would be a huge blow if he cannot make the starting eleven. With Bale undoubtedly the main threat for Spurs, and a man who has memorably impressed against Inter before, all of Inter's back four will be important in keeping track of him as he drifts in off his flank. Christian Chivu and Javier Zanetti will be key to this, and they will be hoping to perform better than Maicon did against the Welshman.

image: © batrax

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