Serie A: Inter 2 Udinese 5
By Football News
Francesco Guidolin's Udinese have confirmed a place in next season's UEFA Europa League after an amazing 5-2 win at San Siro on Sunday.
The visitors raced into a two-goal lead within 10 minutes thanks to Giampiero Pinzi and Maurizio Domizzi, and although Juan Jesus soon pulled one back, they were 4-1 to the good by the 53rd minute.
Antonio Di Natale and Gabriel Silva scored the third and fourth goals before Tommaso Rocchi scored Inter's second, but Luis Muriel's 67th-minute strike put the game beyond doubt.
Inter coach Andrea Stramaccioni made three changes from the side which drew with Genoa in their last fixture, while Udinese's line-up was identical to the team that beat Atalanta.
Udinese got off to a flying start as Allan played the ball forward to the edge of the area for Pinzi and the midfielder's first touch saw him past a bemused Juan Jesus before poking a shot beyond Samir Handanovic to give the visitors a first-minute lead.
Things got even better for the away side a minute later as Di Natale's left-flank free-kick was directed to the far post by Juan and Domizzi nodded the ball into an open goal.
Inter were soon back in the contest, however, as just two minutes later Udinese failed to clear a corner and the ball dropped kindly for Juan who shot at goal from the centre of the penalty area and his effort squirmed under Zeljko Brkic before slowly rolling over the line.
Chances followed at both ends as Esteban Cambiasso saw his front-post flick smothered by Brkic, while Luis Muriel headed wide from Dusan Basta's excellent right-wing cross.
However, the visitors restored their two-goal lead in the 41st minute after Muriel produced a clever back-heel on the left wing, picking out Di Natale on the corner of the penalty area and the Italian curled home a superb effort.
Inter began the second half desperately seeking another goal but that left them very open at the back and it did not take Udinese long to capitalise.
Muriel burst through the middle with immense pace and played a perfectly weighted pass through to Gabriel Silva to his left and the Brazilian lifted a delicate chip over the advancing Handanovic to effectively secure the win before the hour mark.
Inter found themselves just a few inches from pulling one back as Rocchi hit the post, but just a few minutes later he made no mistake as Rodrigo Palacio nipped in front of Basta on the left before crossing low towards the penalty spot where the veteran striker diverted the ball into the bottom-right corner.
However, just four minutes later ruthless Udinese bagged a fifth as Zdravko Kuzmanovic and Handanovic failed to clear Pinzi's through-ball and Muriel surged between them before stroking the ball into an empty net.
The final 15 minutes saw Inter offer attacking intent, but defensively Udinese looked comfortable and they easily held on to their emphatic lead to confirm a place in next season's UEFA Europa League.