Gabriel will get his chance at Inter - Pioli

Updated: 

Stefano Pioli has assured Gabriel Barbosa he will get his chance at Inter following his second appearance of the Serie A season.

Olympic gold medallist Gabriel has struggled to make his mark in the Nerazzurri first team since signing from Santos in August, with reports linking him with a move away from the club on loan in January.

The 20-year-old replaced goalscorer Antonio Candreva in the 91st minute of Sunday's 1-0 win at Sassuolo, during which time he picked up a booking for kicking the ball away.

But Pioli suggested Gabriel can expect to see more action ahead of a congested January.

"We're working hard to all improve together," the Inter boss told a post-match news conference.

"He has ability and talent and, along with his team-mates, he'll have the chance to help the team get results.

"Now we have to work even harder as every game becomes crucial in the context of our season. We played intelligently and dug in when we had to.

"We showed great determination and spirit. They are important details in a crucial period of the season.

"We're working to improve a number of areas. That's two clean sheets in a row and we must push on from this."

Inter will be without Joao Mario and Felipe Melo for their next outing against Lazio, the latter receiving his second booking in second-half stoppage time at the Mapei Stadium.

"Melo played well and I don't think he deserved a second yellow but he was punished for someone else's tactical mistake," Pioli said.

"Obviously he's a very experienced player and he needs to use that to decide when to make a challenge."