Javier Zanetti has turned his attention to a Coppa Italia semi-final against Roma after Inter's 2-0 loss against Cagliari at the weekend.Inter were beaten 2-1 at the Stadio Olimpico in the first leg of the tie and Zanetti is desperate to turn things around in the return clash as he aims to save Inter's season with cup success.
Inter coach Andrea Stramaccioni believes his side's season has been 'cursed' with injuries and refereeing decisions.Inter are seventh after their 2-0 loss to Cagliari on Sunday and the 37-year-old is in no doubt as to the cause of their slump.
Inter Milan's hopes of Champions League football next season were dealt a severe blow after suffering a 2-0 defeat at Cagliari on Sunday.
Inter were the dominant force for much of the game but failed to take their chances in front of goal, with Mauricio Pinilla's second-half brace condemning Andrea Stramaccioni's men to their second successive loss after last week's 4-3 capitulation at home to Atalanta.
With Inter dictating the match, Cagliari were content to play on the counterattack and after having two penalty claims rejected, the referee pointed to the spot in the 63rd minute when Matias Silvestre fouled Pinilla, who stepped up and rifled the ball past goalkeeper Samir Handanovic.
Cagliari could have doubled their lead six minutes later had it not been for a lack of direction on Thiago Ribeiro's header which enabled Handanovic to make a routine save.
Inter continued to prove wasteful in front of goal and their fate was sealed in the 76th minute. Once more it was Pinilla, who stabbed the ball into the roof of the net after a delightful one-two with Matias Cabrera.
The 2010 Italian champions fall to seventh in the standings, one point adrift of rivals Roma, who accounted for Torino 2-1 despite playing the final nine minutes with 10 men.
Pablo Osvaldo put Roma ahead on 22 minutes before Rolando Bianchi cancelled out the Italian's effort nine minutes later.
Argentine attacker Erik Lamela restored Roma's lead on the hour-mark and it proved to be the match-winner although they were made to work in the close stages after Federico Balzaretti saw red for a second bookable offence.
Elsewhere on Sunday, Udinese moved to within two points of Inter thanks to a 3-0 win over Parma, relegation-threatened Palermo held Bologna to a 1-1 draw, fellow strugglers Genoa earned a point in their 1-1 stalemate with Sampdoria, while Chievo and Catania shared the spoils after a goalless encounter.
In the later kick-off, AC Milan failed to gain ground on second-placed Napoli after a 1-1 draw at the San Siro.
Mathieu Flamini had the hosts ahead on the half-hour mark, only for Goran Pandev to equalise three minutes later.
Flamini later turned villain when he was sent off on 72 minutes, although Walter Mazzarri's men failed to capitalise on their man advantage.
Regardless, Napoli have a four-point buffer over third-placed Milan through 31 matches.
Andrea Stramaccioni says Inter have put last week's controversial defeat to Atalanta behind them ahead of Cagliari on Sunday.The Milanese giants crumbled to a 4-3 reverse at the hands of Atalanta, but the result was promptly followed by an angry post-match outburst from their coach who felt that a 'non-existent' penalty inspired their opponents' comeback.
Napoli striker Goran Pandev is backing Jose Mourinho to lead Real Madrid to glory in this season's Champions League.The Macedonia international was part of the Inter Milan side that recorded a historic treble under Mourinho in 2009/10 and he still has the utmost respect for the Portuguese coach.