In seasons gone by, Roma and Inter would have viewed a Coppa Italia semi-final as an unwelcome distraction from the challenge of winning far bigger prizes.
However, the reality is that the clash has taken on huge significance as it offers a last shot at glory for two teams who have endured distinctly underwhelming campaigns to date.
Inter are all but out of the Serie A title picture after a defeat to Parma at the weekend and were humbled in the Champions League quarter-finals by Schalke.
Meanwhile, Roma have failed to kick on since Vincenzo Montella replaced Claudio Ranieri as manager and now sit seven points adrift of bitter rivals Lazio in the race for a top-four finish.
Bwin is offering odds of 33/20 on Inter recording a first-leg win at the Olimpico on Tuesday as they look to successfully defend at least one trophy from last year’s treble-winning campaign.
But Leonardo’s men have lost their last three on the road in all competitions and have shipped a worrying 12 goals in their past five matches.
Roma will be hell-bent on revenge after losing out to Inter in the 2010 Coppa Italia final and have won their last two home clashes against the Nerazzurri in Serie A.
They are priced at 3/2 to build a lead in front of their home support, which means a successful £10 stake on them to triumph would return £25.
But with defensive frailties being experienced by both teams this season – as shown by their last meeting in February, which resulted in a 5-3 victory for Inter at the San Siro – perhaps the goal betting markets could provide a more realistic chance of a decent win.
Interestingly, Roma have conceded 29 goals in the last half an hour of matches in Serie A, a record which is comfortably the worst in the division.
This suggests that they tire badly towards the end of games, so perhaps betting on Inter to score either once or twice in the second half, at odds of 8/5 and 5/1 respectively, could be a wise move.
Inter are also priced at 21/20 by bwin to score the last goal of the match, which would see a successful £10 stake return £20.50.
Coppa Italia betting fans looking to back the hosts to get a positive result should note that Inter have only been ahead at the interval three times in their away league matches this season.
With that in mind, selections such as Roma/Roma (13/4) and draw/Roma (19/4) in the half-time/full-time market could prove popular with punters who expect Inter’s woes to continue.
A winning £10 bet on Roma to beat Inter 3-2 would return £290.
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