Inter stuttered, suffered and lost Wesley Sneijder, but clinical finishing saw them take a 2-0 victory away from Chievo’s Stadio Bentegodi.
The Nerazzurri were feeling the pressure after a shock 2-0 home defeat to Siena on Sunday. Andrea Stramaccioni hoped to at least maintain an excellent away record so far this season, albeit without the injured Rodrigo Palacio, Dejan Stankovic and MacDonald Mariga, so switched to a new three-man defence. Cristian Chivu failed a pre-match fitness test. Chievo had won the opening round, but lost the next three on the bounce. Luciano, Alberto Paloschi and Lorenzo Squizzi were long-term absentees.
Chievo had the better start at the Bentegodi, as Perparim Hetemaj tested Samir Handanovic and Sergio Pellissier had timid penalty appeals for a tussle with Walter Samuel.
Inter got off to a poor start and it got worse, as Sneijder limped off with a left thigh problem to make way for Cassano.
It was all Chievo in the first half and Pellissier drilled wide of the near post, as Inter only threatened when Fredy Guarin fought his way into the box and flashed an angled drive across the face of goal.
Yet, the Nerazzurri took the lead on the stroke of half-time with a goal out of nowhere. The Yuto Nagatomo cross-shot took a huge deflection and bounced into the path of Pereira to tap in from six yards. However, replays suggest he might’ve been fractionally offside.
Handanovic got down well to palm a Marco Rigoni daisy-cutter off the line, then flew to palm a stunning Rigoni free kick out from under the bar.
Inter once again took their chances with clinical finishing that Chievo lacked. Cassano got in front of Milito to control a Walter Gargano pass and place the delicate angled drive across Sorrentino, marking his 300th Serie A match.
Chievo were denied a deserved goal, as Cruzado’s splendid free kick beat Handanovic only to crack against the upright
Debutant Samassa put the ball in the net in stoppages, but he was clearly offside.