A place in the Coppa Italia semi-final is the prize up for grabs when Fiorentina host Inter on Sunday at the Stadio Artemio Franchi.
If Fiorentina are to claim that spot they will need to come back from their 2-0 defeat in Milan two weeks ago.
The club have decided to move this game from the usual venue for the women’s games, the Stadio Gino Bozzi, to the main stadium. Inter certainly won’t have fond memories of their trip here on the opening day of the season. The Viola won that meeting 4-0, with the club’s top-scorer Daniela Sabatino grabbing her first two goals of the campaign.
Fiorentina also hosted Slavia Prague at the Franchi for their Champions League clash in December. That first leg finished 2-2, and the team went on to claim a place in the last 16. (That draw takes place next Tuesday)
A week before the Coppa Italia first leg game with Inter, Fiorentina had already travelled to Milan. In that Serie A meeting, the Viola came out on top. Having gone behind they came back to win 3-2, thanks to a superb strike from the in-form Tessel Middag.
That was her second goal in two games, and Tessel was so happy, she even braved an interview in Italian.
Water Wonderful Win
Fiorentina have opened 2021 with three league wins out of three. The latest of those was a 2-0 home win over Napoli last Sunday. The first-half of that game was played under torrential rain, which really made parts of the pitch almost unplayable.
This photo shows Louise Quinn trying to encourage her team-mates by explaining how this is just typical Irish weather.
Antonio Cincotta has had to do without quite a few of his first-team players recently. Between injuries and Covid cases, it’s meant a call up to the senior squad for quite a few Primavera players. It’s also left him with limited options to change things around and rest players.
Some good news finally came last week when Cláudia Neto returned to the squad from injury. The Portuguese playmaker spent that game on the bench, but it’s very important for this squad to have her back available.
Inter lost their most recent game, a 1-0 defeat at Sassuolo. That was actually their fourth league defeat in a row. They have also struggled somewhat for goals, scoring 16 in their 13 Serie A games.
While Fiorentina obviously need to score goals on Sunday to get back into this tie, they will also be aware of the importance of keeping a clean sheet. An Inter goal would mean the Viola needing to score four, so they know they need to keep things tight at the back.
An important role then for Louise Quinn, who will also be a possible goal-scorer from set-pieces.
TEAM TALK: @louise_quinn4— ACF Fiorentina Femminile (@ACF_Womens) February 11, 2021
"Abbiamo bisogno di una grande performance". Louise Quinn è pronta per la sfida di domenica contro @Inter_Women
"We need a great performance". Quinn's ready for Sunday's clash against Inter in #CoppaItaliaFemminile#ForzaViola #Fiorentina pic.twitter.com/r8sZNKpIOh
Of course we hope that Katja Schroffenegger won’t have too much to do on Sunday, but if our keeper is called upon we know we’ll be in safe hands.
Fiorentina Fighting Spirit
This tie is far from over. This is a team that does not give up. A team that will give their all until that final whistle. When the chips are down, that’s when they come out battling. Take a look at that Champions League tie in Prague, the game was in added time, the referee ready to signal the end. A last second free-kick was floated in and Daniela Sabatino was there to head home an historic goal for the club.
The winner of this quarter-final tie will face either AC Milan or Sassuolo in the semi-final.
Not a game to miss then, Sunday at 12:30 CET, and as always you can watch it on the Fiorentina official website.