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Preview: Inter Milan vs. Bologna - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Inter Milan vs. Bologna - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Serie A clash between Inter Milan and Bologna, including team news and predicted lineups.

Inter Milan will be looking to keep their slim Serie A title hopes alive when they take on Bologna at San Siro on Sunday.

The Nerazzurri thrashed Brescia 6-0 in midweek but remain eight points adrift of leaders Juventus, while a 1-1 draw with Cagliari last time out leaves Bologna in 11th place.

Match preview

Inter have been in good form since returning to Serie A action last month, collecting 10 points from the 12 on offer.

Unfortunately for Antonio Conte's men, though, Juve have won three games from three and have only strengthened their lead at the summit.

The 18-time Italian champions will not give up until it is mathematically impossible to finish top, and their big win over Brescia was a good way to go about laying down a marker.

Six different players registered on Wednesday evening, with leading goalscorer Romelu Lukaku not among them - he remained on the bench for 68 minutes at San Siro.

That thumping victory made it 62 goals for Inter after 29 Serie A games, which is their second-best tally in the last 55 years, behind only 2006-07 when registering 63 goals.

Inter remain on course to triumph in the Europa League, but domestically it is looking as though 2019-20 - Conte's first at the club - will end trophyless.

Plans are already in place for next season, however, with exciting full-back Achraf Hakimi joining this week in a permanent deal from Real Madrid.

Like Inter, Bologna do not have a great deal to play for on the face of it, the Rossoblu finding themselves five points off a Europa League spot and 13 above the dropzone.

That five-point margin not seem like a great deal, but fifth-place AC Milan have momentum on their side and three other teams are better placed than Bologna to pounce.

Sinisa Mihajlovic's men have not been in the best of form since resuming Serie A action last month, either, winning one, drawing one and losing one of their three matches.

After going down 2-0 at home to champions Juve and beating Sampdoria 2-1 away, Bologna played out a 1-1 draw with Cagliari in their most recent outing.

Following a 2-1 loss to Inter in the reverse match - Lukaku netting a late winner in that one - Bologna are facing two losses to Inter in the same season for the first time since 2015-16.

Inter Milan's Serie A form: LLWDWW
Inter Milan's form (all competitions): LDWDWW

Bologna's Serie A form: LDLLWD

Team News

Lukaku and Christian Eriksen were given a breather against Brescia, both being kept on the bench until the final quarter of the game, but should return to the starting lineup here.

Alexis Sanchez was on the scoresheet in that one-sided affair, though it may well be the Chilean who makes way for Lukaku on Sunday.

Defender Milan Skriniar will play no part due to suspension, meanwhile, and midfield pair Stefano Sensi and Matias Vecino are nursing injuries.

As for Bologna, they have four confirmed absentees for this trip to Milan - Andreas Skov Olsen, Federico Santander, Ibrahima Mbaye and Andrea Poli.

Rodrigo Palacio played 140 Serie A games for Inter, scoring 39 goals between 2012 and 2017, and is expected to retain his place in attacking midfield.

Indeed, Mihajlovic may well opt to stick with the same XI that started the draw with Cagliari on Wednesday.

Inter Milan possible starting lineup:
Handanovic; Godin, De Vrij, Bastoni; Candreva, Barella, Valero, Young; Eriksen; Martinez, Lukaku

Bologna possible starting lineup:
Skorupski; Tomiyasu, Danilo, Bani, Dijks; Schouten, Medel; Orsolini, Soriano, Palacio; Barrow

We say: Inter Milan 2-0 Bologna

Inter are in decent form and are still not officially out of the title race just yet. Conte's men will be keen to continue building momentum and, while Bologna have only lost four times in their last 14 outings, we are backing them to prevail on Sunday.

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