Italian Football: Fiorentina fear Internazionale

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The Independent Online
FIORENTINA, THE Italian league leaders, attempt to bounce back from last week's 4-2 defeat at Piacenza when they entertain a resurgent Internazionale - up to sixth in Serie A with 14 points, just four points behind Fiorentina, after beating Sampdoria 3-0 last Sunday - in tomorrow's live Channel 4 game in Florence.

Fiorentina are enjoying their first spell at the top of Serie A since 1982. Gabriel Batistuta, their world class Argentine hit man, is the top scorer in Serie A with 10 goals, while Edmundo, his temperamental Brazilian international strike partner, has also been in form. Apart from doubts about the Portuguese midfielder Rui Costa, Fiorentina are at full strength.

This was to have been the week that Ronaldo, the brilliant Brazilian striker and Roberto Baggio, the superb playmaker/striker finally took centre stage for Inter after battling knee injuries. Inter signed the 31-year-old Baggio from Bologna this summer, banking on the veteran providing the ideal creative force to exploit Ronaldo's blinding pace and power. But they have played together for just 70 minutes in Serie A this season.

Hampered by tendinitis in both knees, Ronaldo has appeared in just three league games, but has scored every time he has set foot on the pitch. However, latest indications from the Inter camp are that Ronaldo may still be missing and, with the striker Nicola Ventola, the winger Francesco Moriero and the Dutchman Aron Winter also injured, Ivan Zamorano, the veteran Chi lean international striker, may partner Baggio up front.

This game could be a goalfest. Neither Inter (14 goals conceded in nine games and without the suspended defender Francesco Colonnese tomorrow) nor Fiorentina (11 conceded) inspire confidence at the back.

Other games: Today: Roma v Bari, Cagliari v Parma, Bologna v Perugia. Tomorrow: Juventus v Empoli, Salernitana v Venezia, Sampdoria v Vicenza, Udinese v Piacenza. Tomorrow night: Milan v Lazio.

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