The sides last met back in April 2013 with the Rosanero running out 1-0 winners thanks to a goal from Josip Ilicic. Inter legend Javier Zanetti picked up a career-threatening Achilles injury in the same match but recovered to pull on the famous Nerazzurri colours again before retirement.
Inter have a solid record over the Sicilian side in Italy’s top flight, with a record of nine victories to Palermo’s three and six draws between the two teams. Their encounters in the league have often been high-scoring affairs, especially in February 2012 when the match ended 4-4. All in all, over 60 percent of Inter-Palermo matches have created over 2.5 goals.
Mazzarri’s men are unbeaten in their last six matches, and hit Sassuolo for seven last time out in Serie A. The Nerazzurri will take further confidence from their 1-0 away victory against Dnipro in the Europa League on Thursday but will hope that the trip to Ukraine will not have an effect on their energy levels. Inter had a strong goal-scoring record on the road last season, and managed to match their home win tally.
Meanwhile Palermo will be hoping to secure their first victory of the season since promotion from Serie B. They started with a 1-1 draw at home against Sampdoria but fell to a 2-1 defeat away at Hellas Verona last time out in the league.
Eccentric president Maurizio Zamparini has put Palermo’s rough start down to a lack of experience and has confirmed coach Giuseppe Iachini will remain at the club even if they lose their next five fixtures. “I confirm that Iachini will remain as coach of Palermo even if we were to lose the next five games of the season,” Zamparini said on RAI Radio 2. “We are paying the price for our inexperience, but we should have six points in the standings. Two wins against Verona and Sampdoria escaped us.”
En route to promotion last season, the Rosanero held the best defensive record in Serie B, conceding on just 28 occasions. But they will face an Inter attack that will really put their skills in defence to the test for possibly the first time this season.
The home side will be without defender Ezequiel Munoz and long-term absentee Francesco Della Rocca, while Inter have just one injury concern in Yuto Nagatomo.
Expected starting XIs
Palermo – Sorrentino; Terzi, Daprela, Andelkovic, Pisano; Bolzoni, Rigoni, Barreto, Feddal; Vazquez, Dybala
Inter – Handanovic; Ranocchia, Vidic, Juan Jesus; Dodo, Hernanes, Medel, Kovacic, D’Ambrosio; Icardi, Osvaldo