Inter Milan needed a goal with the final kick of extra time to take the Supercoppa Italiana away from Juventus, but in fairness, they were the better side on the night.
The league leaders came racing out the blocks, immediately piling forwards at speed and putting pressure on the Old Lady’s back line, but our defence stood firm. We were forced to soak up pressure as the Nerazzurri attempted to break the deadlock early, and they did have me worried when VAR appeared to be looking at a penalty decision in our box, but the referee wasn’t asked to check thankfully…
We began to get a foothold on proceedings after the initial quarter of an hour however, and it wasn’t long before we got that breakthrough. Alvaro Morata found Weston McKennie in the centre of the box with his perfectly placed cross from the left, and the American made no mistake in giving us the lead after just 25 minutes of action.
Inter immediately picked up the pace once again and were looking extremely dangerous, and around 10 minutes after our initial goal they were given a penalty after a foul by De Sciglio inside the box. Lautauro Martinez made no mistake in punishing us from the spot, and we eventually went into the break level.
The second-half started much more evenly, now with Federico Bernadeschi getting into the game, weaving his way upfield with his tricks and speed, but he was lacking that final ball which could have made all the difference.
Whilst the home side appeared to be enjoying the most possession, it seemed to be us who was getting the most clearcut chances, and we eventually moved to change things up top, bringing on both Paulo Dybala and Moise Kean to chase the win in the final 15 minutes of normal time.
Neither side was able to get that all-important late goal to clinch the trophy inside the 90 minutes, meaning that we would get to enjoy another 30 minutes of this exciting clash.
The first standout opportunity in extra time came when Alexis Sanchez lost his man on the corner kick to get free near the penalty spot, and while his effort looked agonisingly like it was headed for the low right of the goal, it just ventured the other side of the post.
The two sides were either showing signs of tiredness or the fear of conceding and losing at this late stage was creeping in, with both sides taking few risks late on, with just a couple of corners needing to be defended as time ticked down as we headed towards a dreaded penalty shootout, but that wasn’t to be.
A failed clearance by Alex Sandro in the box allowed Matteo Darmian to knock the ball onto Alexis Sanchez in the dying minutes of the game, and his finish from close range proved to be the final kick of the game.
The game certainly didn’t go the way we wanted, but it was definitely a spectacle to watch, and you have to believe that it could all have been different if we had all our best players fit.