Inter extended their unbeaten spell to 12 wins from 12 in the year 2024 as the Nerazzurri defeated Genoa 2-1 at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on Monday, March 4.

Ahead of a tricky string coming up with matches against Bologna, Atlético Madrid and Napoli, Genoa did not make things easy for Inter despite a comfortable 2-0 lead going into halftime. Alberto Gilardino’s side grabbed a goal back early in the second half and looked to be by far the better side in the late stages of the match and appeared to be the ones closer to getting an equalizing goal rather than the hosts extending their lead.

Inter lined up as follows (3-5-2): Sommer; Pavard, de Vrij, Carlos Augusto; Dumfries, Barella, Asllani, Mkhitaryan, Dimarco; Alexis Sánchez, Lautaro Martínez.

Genoa lined up as follows (3-5-2): Josep Martínez; De Winter, Bani, Vásquez; Sabelli, Messias, Badelj, Frendrup, Caricol; Retegui, Guðmundsson.

The match began with opportunities from both sides, Genoa arguably had more and bigger chances in the opening 20 minutes than Inter did. In the 24th minute, Henrikh Mkhitaryan played a great ball from the left into the box and found Nicolò Barella. The midfielder looked to be caught in his decision-making and played a soft volley that flew over the bar, seemingly a cross between a shot and a pass.

Two minutes later at the other end of the pitch, Matteo Retegui had his effort saved by a wonderful palm from Yann Sommer. Inter’s goalkeeper prevented a sure goal and Genoa were unable to take the lead on the rebound.

In the 30th minute, Nicolò Barella picked the ball up and found Alexis Sánchez in the middle of the park. Alexis spotted the bursting run from Kristjan Asllani, who broke through Genoa’s defence and smashed the ball into the top of the net, blasting past Josep Martínez! The young midfielder finally had his first goal for Inter.

Minutes later, Nicolò Barella was sprinting through on goal and got a shot off, which failed to hit the target. The midfielder was caught by Genoa’s Morten Frendup on his follow-through and was taken out in the box. The referee was in immediate contact with the VAR officials before heading to the screen to check a potential penalty. Despite VAR deciding against a penalty, the main official stuck with his initial call and blew for a penalty. It must be said that this was a controversial decision, as Barella had already gotten his shot off before being taken out by Frendup, Nonetheless, Inter had a penalty just after opening the score.

Surprisingly, yet unsurprisingly, Alexis Sánchez was the chosen penalty taker with Hakan Çalhanoğlu out through injury and Lautaro Martínez having a very poor penalty record. The Chilean veteran stepped up, sent Josep Martínez the wrong way and buried Inter’s second into the bottom right corner of the net!

After the second half kicked off, Genoa was quick to get back into the match. In the 54th minute, Genoa picked the ball up in the midfield, tried their luck and the ball was cleared by  Stefan de Vrij. The Dutch international’s clearance only went as far as Genoa defender Johan Vásquez, who struck first time on the volley and caught Yann Sommer flat-footed.

The remainder of the second half was mostly filled with Inter absorbing pressure while Genoa attempted, unsuccessfully, to break through the defence and find an equalizer. In the 74th minute of play, Genoa substitute Djed Spence picked out Matteo Retegui, whose header glanced just wide of the post.

In the 84th minute, Inter substitute Marcus Thuram made a great play and found Carlos Augusto. The Brazilian fullback tried his luck and found the target, but his shot was saved comfortably by Martínez.

Following a tight second half but solid performance, here is how we have rated Inter’s performers on the day.

Player Ratings

Yann Sommer – 6.5

Made an incredible save to deny Genoa from taking the lead early in the first half. Not much he could do on the goal.

Benjamin Pavard – 6

Not quite the same level we’ve seen from Pavard lately.

Stefan de Vrij – 6.5

Really solid and did his best to nullify Albert Guðmundsson.

Carlos Augusto – 6.5

Great performance, playing most of the match at LCB without issues and finished the match at LWB.

Denzel Dumfries – 5

Too many very poor touches to lose possession. Picked up an early yellow card which saw him substituted at the half.

Nicolò Barella – 7

Did not stop running, was genuinely all over the pitch. Had a few opportunities to score that unfortunately did not come off.

Kristjan Asllani – 7

Extremely good first half, scoring his first Inter goal in incredible fashion, completed 100% of his passes. Looked very sluggish and tired in the second half, lost possession far too much with sloppy touches and passes.

Henrikh Mkhitaryan – 6

Heavily involved in the first half, did well to create chances. Looked very tired towards the end of the match.

Federico Dimarco – 6.5

Created trouble up and down the left flank, creating opportunities for his teammates.

Alexis Sánchez – 7.5

Vintage Alexis today, creating the first goal with a smart through-ball and slotting the penalty for the second goal. Looking much better over the past games, has been involved in several goals.

Lautaro Martínez (C) – 6

A rare poor performance from Serie A’s top goalscorer this season. Received a harsh yellow card.


Matteo Darmian – 6

Provided security on the right side. Beaten in the air which led to Genoa’s goal, but was not completely his fault.

Marcus Thuram – 6.5

Back from injury and made a great impact. Showed off his skills and nearly had an assist.

Francesco Acerbi – 6.5

Also returned from injury after being out for around a month and returned in style. Completed all of his passes and had several defensive actions.

Yann Bisseck – 6

Entered the match and did nothing wrong.

Marko Arnautović – 6.5

Helped to kill off the match by holding up the ball and drawing fouls. Exactly what Inter needed.