Napoli - Inter (3 Dec 23) [0-3]

ElDuccio

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BuT MaSsA is GettIng SUSpended AnD yoU pEoPle ArE SAyinG it was rEgUlaR...

:yao:

never trust shitty sources and just wait before posting things. Massa did nothing wrong and the decision he made were right, end of story. The only people that are talking are Juve fans and Napoli fans, apprently we have some here too. I don't like to sound too harsch but enough is enough. There are some things that i just can't accept, for me this whole "we were lucky" or "we are winning like juve" is BULLSHIT.
This guys deserves respect and we should enjoy how good the team is. And if they can hold this as much as they can, probably no one will stop us this season. Inter is the real deal this season. It's true that our road to the CL final was easier then City´s. But looking at everything, at the moment we are exactly what someone would expect from a team that played a CL final some month ago. If we ignore the points and look only at the other numbers in the table + the perfomance of most games, we could easily say that this team is the City or Bayern of the league. We have to be really proud. Of course things can always change, a lot of times we had a crumble at mid season. And hopefully they learned from the mistakes and manage to avoid it as much we can...
 
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CafeCordoba

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We can agree Lautaro is grabbing Lobotka and thus blocking him from advancing to Barella (to interfere him), but Lobotka also blocked Lautaro in the first place with his body. Lautaro was about to go from Lobotka's backside but Lobotka backed his body to block Lautaro, then Lautaro grabbed Lobotka with his arms so Lobotka cannot advance either. My assumption is ref just let it play from there and not whistle neither one.
 

bubba zanetti

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BuT MaSsA is GettIng SUSpended AnD yoU pEoPle ArE SAyinG it was rEgUlaR...

:yao:

never trust shitty sources and just wait before posting things. Massa did nothing wrong and the decision he made were right, end of story. The only people that are talking are Juve fans and Napoli fans, apprently we have some here too.
Well, claiming that I am rube or Napoli fan is a insult. I could say many things right now about you but I wont, I dont want to stoop down to your level, thats too low for me.
 

ElDuccio

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Well, claiming that I am rube or Napoli fan is a insult. I could say many things right now about you but I wont, I dont want to stoop down to your level, thats too low for me.
take it as insult or what ever but this are official decisions, Massa made no mistakes and inter fans who still say something against it are disrespecting the own team after a desserved victory. Napoli Juve or Milan fans can say what they want because i already know what to expect from that delusional fan bases, but not Inter fans.
 

CafeCordoba

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take it as insult or what ever but this are official decisions, Massa made no mistakes and inter fans who still say something against it are disrespecting the own team after a desserved victory. Napoli Juve or Milan fans can say what they want because i already know what to expect from that delusional fan bases, but not Inter fans.
In their eyes we are as delusional so that's a pretty moot statement.

But this penalty case was not some clear cut ref error, more about interpretation. Same as the Lautaro-Lobotka incident.

And let's stop calling people names or suggest they are not Inter fans. But bubba can also stop insisting. This is what happened, AIA didn't see clear errors (like they have done previously and interfered), it was ref interpretation and we move on.
 

bubba zanetti

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Wait what are official decisions? Was Massa right or not? I dont know Italian but is there any official statement(or moviola) that proves that both Lautaro and Acerbi situation were right call by ref? So why are they considering him to be suspended? And nobody is taking anything from the boys, some of us just dont wanna any controversies in our winning, we are not gobbi ffs.
 

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IMO, regarding Osimen situation, the contact was just too soft. One can argue that a soft contact can be a hard one if it directly hits a speeding player. This however was not the case. I even think that Osimen was diving as soon as he felt there was a slight contact. If there were a doubt, VAR probably would have intervened. Both the referee and VAR agreed it was not a pen, then it was not.

regarding Lautaro situation, it was a 50/50. This time it went our way. My sense is that the situation did not lead to a clear scoring chance. Hakan's goal came almost 30 seconds later after 5-6 passes and crosses. And again, VAR did not intervene. Also, talking about precedent, Lookman pulling and pushing Dimarco (which led to an easy scoring chance) was not a foul (VAR also did not intervene). Lautaro situation did not even come close to that event.

My only question is can referees simply ignore VAR request? If Massa did, then it would be a problem for him.
 

CafeCordoba

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Wait what are official decisions? Was Massa right or not? I dont know Italian but is there any official statement(or moviola) that proves that both Lautaro and Acerbi situation were right call by ref? So why are they considering him to be suspended? And nobody is taking anything from the boys, some of us just dont wanna any controversies in our winning, we are not gobbi ffs.
Official decision is the one ref makes on the pitch. Then AIA can suspend the ref if there were clear errors made on the pitch. So far AIA hasn't suspended Massa.

You can read the links provided earlier (using Google translate). Basically Rocchi and AIA confirmed Massa officiated correctly.
 

ElDuccio

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Wait what are official decisions? Was Massa right or not? I dont know Italian but is there any official statement(or moviola) that proves that both Lautaro and Acerbi situation were right call by ref? So why are they considering him to be suspended? And nobody is taking anything from the boys, some of us just dont wanna any controversies in our winning, we are not gobbi ffs.
No the official decision says that he made 0 mistakes, he generelly got a really good judgement for that game. The sources who said they are consering to suspend him were wrong, it was a fake news.

For me it was also clear based on what we saw, the decisions he made were right and thats why im mad at reading things like "we are not gobbi" because there were no mistakes. And im also someone that admits errors from the ref even if it benefit Inter, really.
 

bubba zanetti

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Official decision is the one ref makes on the pitch. Then AIA can suspend the ref if there were clear errors made on the pitch. So far AIA hasn't suspended Massa.

You can read the links provided earlier (using Google translate). Basically Rocchi and AIA confirmed Massa officiated correctly.
But remember, many times same thing happened to rube and still AIA would be on refs side so I wont take their statement as a proof that those decisions were right. But, I'll rest my case. I hope no more things like these in the future.
 

DARi0

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Sommer was rated 7.5/10 by La Gazzetta dello Sport and Inter fans picked him as the Man Of the Match at the Stadio Maradona with over 50% of votes, beating goalscorers Nicolò Barella, Hakan Calhanoglu and Marcus Thuram.

 

Gal

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But when Thuram gets soft penalty then its ok right?

I think I remember that I called things thin going our direction several times… I also never said it was fair… also these are still 50/50 calls, they are not clear cut obvious fault you have to call.

Personally I find the offence needed to be awarded a freekick and penalty has long crossed the line of being too small. This obviously goes both directions, you can hardly touch a player anymore and it’s a freekick… player Like Materazzi would get an early shower ever game with todays line.
 

drekaforzainter

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Sommer was rated 7.5/10 by La Gazzetta dello Sport and Inter fans picked him as the Man Of the Match at the Stadio Maradona with over 50% of votes, beating goalscorers Nicolò Barella, Hakan Calhanoglu and Marcus Thuram.

Agree with La Gazzetta, without Sommer performing like that, we wouldnt be able to get a 0-3 victory
 

Cane

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We can agree Lautaro is grabbing Lobotka and thus blocking him from advancing to Barella (to interfere him), but Lobotka also blocked Lautaro in the first place with his body. Lautaro was about to go from Lobotka's backside but Lobotka backed his body to block Lautaro, then Lautaro grabbed Lobotka with his arms so Lobotka cannot advance either. My assumption is ref just let it play from there and not whistle neither one.
This. Though in live action I don't believe I used those exact words. It was much shorter with great emphasis on refs being cunts.
 

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Inter play with an aura – their win over Napoli shows only Juventus can stop them in Serie A​

By James Horncastle Dec 4, 2023

Simone Inzaghi was a baby when Inter Milan last went to Naples and won 3-0. Apart from the odd strand of grey, Inzaghi’s hair is still raven black. But make no mistake, it was still a long time ago. April, 1977. Inter don’t often win in the shadow of Vesuvius. They went 13 years without celebrating one at the Maradona until a winter’s night in 2020 when Romelu Lukaku scored twice. Lautaro Martinez then ended Napoli’s hopes of a comeback in a 3-1 victory.

Inter, then under the management of Inzaghi’s predecessor, Antonio Conte, were to be taken seriously again. Only Lautaro and Stefan de Vrij were still in the starting XI on Sunday night. Everyone else, apart from the injured Alessandro Bastoni, has either retired or been sold. But Inter are even better today. This is the finest Italian team, pound for pound, since Juventus reached two Champions League finals between 2015 and 2017. “It was a show of force, of togetherness,” Inzaghi said afterwards.

His team hasn’t played at San Siro in what feels like forever. This was Inter’s fifth game on the road in six matches. Since the end of the international break, they have travelled to Juventus, Benfica and, at the weekend, Napoli, the champions of Italy. It has been tiring. In Lisbon, Inzaghi made eight changes with Sunday’s trip to the Bay area in mind. His team had already qualified for the Champions League knockout stages with two games to spare, something that hadn’t happened in almost two decades. But 3-0 down at half-time, Inter still needed to save face. That they came close to winning 4-3 was to some observers another example of the pazza or crazy Inter of old. To others, it underlined that when this team really wants to turn it on, it can.

Scarily, the comeback was already almost complete before Inzaghi glanced over to his bench and brought on the big guns. Inter play with an aura that only the great Italian teams possess. In their case, it comes from that night in Istanbul in June when they played the best team in the world, lost undeservedly, and returned knowing they could and should have beaten Man City. Inzaghi didn’t anticipate the team to build on it. “We’ve had three and a half very good months,” he said. “It’s unexpected because we changed 12 or 13 players.”

Sunday felt like a major statement. Juventus had gone top on Friday night with a gutsy stoppage-time win in Monza, the kind real contenders are made of.

Psychologically, it did not faze Inter. The prospect of Victor Osimhen starting his first game in nearly two months didn’t either. Even with an injury-hit defence. “We lost de Vrij after 18 minutes,” Inzaghi observed. “Bastoni and Benjamin Pavard were at home (recuperating). I had (a couple of summer signings) Yann Bisseck and Carlos Augusto, who last played in a back three 18 months ago with Monza in Serie B.”

Inzaghi could have thrown on Bisseck and moved Matteo Darmian over to the other side, but it would have meant putting a player who was playing for Aarhus in Denmark last season up against Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, the Serie A MVP. Darmian stayed where he was and, once again, defended expertly.

Inter kept a clean sheet, their 11th of the season in all competitions. They had Andre Onana’s replacement, the veteran Yann Sommer, to thank for it. The Switzerland international isn’t a Pirlo-in-gloves like his predecessor, but, according to StatsBomb data, he is second for “goals saved above average” in Serie A behind Monza’s ex-Inter academy graduate Michele Di Gregorio. Sommer produced a huge early save from Elif Elmas and denied Kvaratskhelia later in the game.

At the other end, Lukaku’s successor, Marcus Thuram, continues to demonstrate his credentials as the signing of the season in Serie A. In Lisbon in midweek he came on and made an instant impact, winning his fifth penalty of the season, the source of Inter’s equaliser. On Sunday, he had a goal disallowed for a marginal offside before netting his fifth for the club, a tap-in that paled in comparison with the beauty he curled in during the 5-1 demolition of AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina. Five goals, six assists and five penalty wins in less than half a season would represent value even if he cost tens of millions. But Thuram arrived on a free transfer from Borussia Monchengladbach, one of the best Bosmans in chief executive Beppe Marotta’s career.

As good as Inter’s top and tail is at the moment, it’s in the middle where the magic happens. Since the spring, this midfield has emerged as one of the most cerebral and fluid in Europe. A big part of that is Hakan Calhanoglu’s reinvention as a deep-lying playmaker. “I feel underrated,” he said in March. “I’m not far from names (like Kevin De Bruyne, Luka Modric, Pedri and Casemiro). I’ve got everything to get closer to them. Considering how much my game has come on, I see myself among the top five in Europe in my role.”

Shush in the comments. This is no laughing matter.

Marcelo Brozovic’s injuries last season and subsequent move to the Saudi Pro League have consolidated Calhanoglu’s role in front of the back three. No one in Serie A averages more passes per 90 minutes. His wicked through ball for Davide Frattesi in the 2-1 win against Atalanta was one of the finest of the season. It led to a penalty, which of course Calhanoglu, impeccable from the spot, put away. His set-piece deliveries are the league’s best because, ballistically, few players can strike a ball as well as he can. Everyone remembers how Calha, now 30, burst onto the scene with that remarkable long-range free kick for Hamburg against Dortmund and he got Inter on their way in Naples on Sunday with the zippiest of hits. Only James Maddison and De Bruyne have scored more goals from outside the box in Europe’s top five leagues than the Turkey international in the past five years.

Nudging the ball to him for the opener was Nicolo Barella, who admitted: “Things haven’t been coming off for me lately. It’s been a bit of a hard time.” He hit the upright in Lisbon and hadn’t scored at all until Sunday. But here he was again, busy as ever and involved in all of Inter’s goals. His own was all about the playmaking from captain Lautaro, who pulled out wide, spotted his run and set him up. But Barella’s first touch to evade Leo Ostigard was exquisite and shifted the momentum definitively Inter’s way.

Only moments earlier the referee waved Osimhen’s claims for a penalty away. It was the second controversy of the evening after Lautaro appeared to rugby-tackle Stanislav Lobotka in the build-up to Inter’s first goal. Walter Mazzarri was so upset the Napoli coach didn’t appear in front of the media afterwards. His team played well, which only added more lustre to the scale and manner of Inter’s win as they moved back to the top in Serie A. “Tomorrow. they’ll write that Inter have no rivals,” Inzaghi said. “But when we were 3-0 down at half-time against Benfica, they were probably preparing other articles. It’s part of football. I’m used to it. We’re used to it.”

Regardless of the uncertainty surrounding their president, Steven Zhang, and Suning’s ability to hold onto the club beyond May, Inter’s aim to win a 20th Scudetto and earn a prestigious second star remains on course. Only Juventus can stop them. Right now, Inter are one of the most complete teams in Europe.

 

varmin

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As I've already said Lobotka didn't have the possession, so here is the official decision
The first contentious decision on Sunday came in the buildup to Inter’s opening goal.
It was Hakan Calhanoglu who scored with a long-range effort towards the end of the first half of the Serie A clash.

But the Napoli players’ protests concerned an incident a bit earlier on in the sequence of play.

The Partenopei were adamant that Inter captain Lautaro Martinez had fouled Napoli’s Stanislav Lobotka in midfield. This caused the ball to break for Inter, who initiated their attack leading to Calhanoglu’s goal.


But for the Italian Refereeing Association, there was little in that challenge by Martinez.

It may not have been the cleanest of challenges. But Lobotka had already lost control of the ball before that clumsy 50/50 duel.

And in any event, the Refereeing Association contends, the incident took place a ways before the goal was actually scored, even if it was ostensibly an attacking foul
 

YoramG

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Inter play with an aura – their win over Napoli shows only Juventus can stop them in Serie A​

By James Horncastle Dec 4, 2023

Simone Inzaghi was a baby when Inter Milan last went to Naples and won 3-0. Apart from the odd strand of grey, Inzaghi’s hair is still raven black. But make no mistake, it was still a long time ago. April, 1977. Inter don’t often win in the shadow of Vesuvius. They went 13 years without celebrating one at the Maradona until a winter’s night in 2020 when Romelu Lukaku scored twice. Lautaro Martinez then ended Napoli’s hopes of a comeback in a 3-1 victory.

Inter, then under the management of Inzaghi’s predecessor, Antonio Conte, were to be taken seriously again. Only Lautaro and Stefan de Vrij were still in the starting XI on Sunday night. Everyone else, apart from the injured Alessandro Bastoni, has either retired or been sold. But Inter are even better today. This is the finest Italian team, pound for pound, since Juventus reached two Champions League finals between 2015 and 2017. “It was a show of force, of togetherness,” Inzaghi said afterwards.

His team hasn’t played at San Siro in what feels like forever. This was Inter’s fifth game on the road in six matches. Since the end of the international break, they have travelled to Juventus, Benfica and, at the weekend, Napoli, the champions of Italy. It has been tiring. In Lisbon, Inzaghi made eight changes with Sunday’s trip to the Bay area in mind. His team had already qualified for the Champions League knockout stages with two games to spare, something that hadn’t happened in almost two decades. But 3-0 down at half-time, Inter still needed to save face. That they came close to winning 4-3 was to some observers another example of the pazza or crazy Inter of old. To others, it underlined that when this team really wants to turn it on, it can.

Scarily, the comeback was already almost complete before Inzaghi glanced over to his bench and brought on the big guns. Inter play with an aura that only the great Italian teams possess. In their case, it comes from that night in Istanbul in June when they played the best team in the world, lost undeservedly, and returned knowing they could and should have beaten Man City. Inzaghi didn’t anticipate the team to build on it. “We’ve had three and a half very good months,” he said. “It’s unexpected because we changed 12 or 13 players.”

Sunday felt like a major statement. Juventus had gone top on Friday night with a gutsy stoppage-time win in Monza, the kind real contenders are made of.

Psychologically, it did not faze Inter. The prospect of Victor Osimhen starting his first game in nearly two months didn’t either. Even with an injury-hit defence. “We lost de Vrij after 18 minutes,” Inzaghi observed. “Bastoni and Benjamin Pavard were at home (recuperating). I had (a couple of summer signings) Yann Bisseck and Carlos Augusto, who last played in a back three 18 months ago with Monza in Serie B.”

Inzaghi could have thrown on Bisseck and moved Matteo Darmian over to the other side, but it would have meant putting a player who was playing for Aarhus in Denmark last season up against Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, the Serie A MVP. Darmian stayed where he was and, once again, defended expertly.

Inter kept a clean sheet, their 11th of the season in all competitions. They had Andre Onana’s replacement, the veteran Yann Sommer, to thank for it. The Switzerland international isn’t a Pirlo-in-gloves like his predecessor, but, according to StatsBomb data, he is second for “goals saved above average” in Serie A behind Monza’s ex-Inter academy graduate Michele Di Gregorio. Sommer produced a huge early save from Elif Elmas and denied Kvaratskhelia later in the game.

At the other end, Lukaku’s successor, Marcus Thuram, continues to demonstrate his credentials as the signing of the season in Serie A. In Lisbon in midweek he came on and made an instant impact, winning his fifth penalty of the season, the source of Inter’s equaliser. On Sunday, he had a goal disallowed for a marginal offside before netting his fifth for the club, a tap-in that paled in comparison with the beauty he curled in during the 5-1 demolition of AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina. Five goals, six assists and five penalty wins in less than half a season would represent value even if he cost tens of millions. But Thuram arrived on a free transfer from Borussia Monchengladbach, one of the best Bosmans in chief executive Beppe Marotta’s career.

As good as Inter’s top and tail is at the moment, it’s in the middle where the magic happens. Since the spring, this midfield has emerged as one of the most cerebral and fluid in Europe. A big part of that is Hakan Calhanoglu’s reinvention as a deep-lying playmaker. “I feel underrated,” he said in March. “I’m not far from names (like Kevin De Bruyne, Luka Modric, Pedri and Casemiro). I’ve got everything to get closer to them. Considering how much my game has come on, I see myself among the top five in Europe in my role.”

Shush in the comments. This is no laughing matter.

Marcelo Brozovic’s injuries last season and subsequent move to the Saudi Pro League have consolidated Calhanoglu’s role in front of the back three. No one in Serie A averages more passes per 90 minutes. His wicked through ball for Davide Frattesi in the 2-1 win against Atalanta was one of the finest of the season. It led to a penalty, which of course Calhanoglu, impeccable from the spot, put away. His set-piece deliveries are the league’s best because, ballistically, few players can strike a ball as well as he can. Everyone remembers how Calha, now 30, burst onto the scene with that remarkable long-range free kick for Hamburg against Dortmund and he got Inter on their way in Naples on Sunday with the zippiest of hits. Only James Maddison and De Bruyne have scored more goals from outside the box in Europe’s top five leagues than the Turkey international in the past five years.

Nudging the ball to him for the opener was Nicolo Barella, who admitted: “Things haven’t been coming off for me lately. It’s been a bit of a hard time.” He hit the upright in Lisbon and hadn’t scored at all until Sunday. But here he was again, busy as ever and involved in all of Inter’s goals. His own was all about the playmaking from captain Lautaro, who pulled out wide, spotted his run and set him up. But Barella’s first touch to evade Leo Ostigard was exquisite and shifted the momentum definitively Inter’s way.

Only moments earlier the referee waved Osimhen’s claims for a penalty away. It was the second controversy of the evening after Lautaro appeared to rugby-tackle Stanislav Lobotka in the build-up to Inter’s first goal. Walter Mazzarri was so upset the Napoli coach didn’t appear in front of the media afterwards. His team played well, which only added more lustre to the scale and manner of Inter’s win as they moved back to the top in Serie A. “Tomorrow. they’ll write that Inter have no rivals,” Inzaghi said. “But when we were 3-0 down at half-time against Benfica, they were probably preparing other articles. It’s part of football. I’m used to it. We’re used to it.”

Regardless of the uncertainty surrounding their president, Steven Zhang, and Suning’s ability to hold onto the club beyond May, Inter’s aim to win a 20th Scudetto and earn a prestigious second star remains on course. Only Juventus can stop them. Right now, Inter are one of the most complete teams in Europe.

Thanks for posting, love reading James Horncastle usually.
 

bubba zanetti

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Inter play with an aura – their win over Napoli shows only Juventus can stop them in Serie A​

By James Horncastle Dec 4, 2023

Simone Inzaghi was a baby when Inter Milan last went to Naples and won 3-0. Apart from the odd strand of grey, Inzaghi’s hair is still raven black. But make no mistake, it was still a long time ago. April, 1977. Inter don’t often win in the shadow of Vesuvius. They went 13 years without celebrating one at the Maradona until a winter’s night in 2020 when Romelu Lukaku scored twice. Lautaro Martinez then ended Napoli’s hopes of a comeback in a 3-1 victory.

Inter, then under the management of Inzaghi’s predecessor, Antonio Conte, were to be taken seriously again. Only Lautaro and Stefan de Vrij were still in the starting XI on Sunday night. Everyone else, apart from the injured Alessandro Bastoni, has either retired or been sold. But Inter are even better today. This is the finest Italian team, pound for pound, since Juventus reached two Champions League finals between 2015 and 2017. “It was a show of force, of togetherness,” Inzaghi said afterwards.

His team hasn’t played at San Siro in what feels like forever. This was Inter’s fifth game on the road in six matches. Since the end of the international break, they have travelled to Juventus, Benfica and, at the weekend, Napoli, the champions of Italy. It has been tiring. In Lisbon, Inzaghi made eight changes with Sunday’s trip to the Bay area in mind. His team had already qualified for the Champions League knockout stages with two games to spare, something that hadn’t happened in almost two decades. But 3-0 down at half-time, Inter still needed to save face. That they came close to winning 4-3 was to some observers another example of the pazza or crazy Inter of old. To others, it underlined that when this team really wants to turn it on, it can.

Scarily, the comeback was already almost complete before Inzaghi glanced over to his bench and brought on the big guns. Inter play with an aura that only the great Italian teams possess. In their case, it comes from that night in Istanbul in June when they played the best team in the world, lost undeservedly, and returned knowing they could and should have beaten Man City. Inzaghi didn’t anticipate the team to build on it. “We’ve had three and a half very good months,” he said. “It’s unexpected because we changed 12 or 13 players.”

Sunday felt like a major statement. Juventus had gone top on Friday night with a gutsy stoppage-time win in Monza, the kind real contenders are made of.

Psychologically, it did not faze Inter. The prospect of Victor Osimhen starting his first game in nearly two months didn’t either. Even with an injury-hit defence. “We lost de Vrij after 18 minutes,” Inzaghi observed. “Bastoni and Benjamin Pavard were at home (recuperating). I had (a couple of summer signings) Yann Bisseck and Carlos Augusto, who last played in a back three 18 months ago with Monza in Serie B.”

Inzaghi could have thrown on Bisseck and moved Matteo Darmian over to the other side, but it would have meant putting a player who was playing for Aarhus in Denmark last season up against Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, the Serie A MVP. Darmian stayed where he was and, once again, defended expertly.

Inter kept a clean sheet, their 11th of the season in all competitions. They had Andre Onana’s replacement, the veteran Yann Sommer, to thank for it. The Switzerland international isn’t a Pirlo-in-gloves like his predecessor, but, according to StatsBomb data, he is second for “goals saved above average” in Serie A behind Monza’s ex-Inter academy graduate Michele Di Gregorio. Sommer produced a huge early save from Elif Elmas and denied Kvaratskhelia later in the game.

At the other end, Lukaku’s successor, Marcus Thuram, continues to demonstrate his credentials as the signing of the season in Serie A. In Lisbon in midweek he came on and made an instant impact, winning his fifth penalty of the season, the source of Inter’s equaliser. On Sunday, he had a goal disallowed for a marginal offside before netting his fifth for the club, a tap-in that paled in comparison with the beauty he curled in during the 5-1 demolition of AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina. Five goals, six assists and five penalty wins in less than half a season would represent value even if he cost tens of millions. But Thuram arrived on a free transfer from Borussia Monchengladbach, one of the best Bosmans in chief executive Beppe Marotta’s career.

As good as Inter’s top and tail is at the moment, it’s in the middle where the magic happens. Since the spring, this midfield has emerged as one of the most cerebral and fluid in Europe. A big part of that is Hakan Calhanoglu’s reinvention as a deep-lying playmaker. “I feel underrated,” he said in March. “I’m not far from names (like Kevin De Bruyne, Luka Modric, Pedri and Casemiro). I’ve got everything to get closer to them. Considering how much my game has come on, I see myself among the top five in Europe in my role.”

Shush in the comments. This is no laughing matter.

Marcelo Brozovic’s injuries last season and subsequent move to the Saudi Pro League have consolidated Calhanoglu’s role in front of the back three. No one in Serie A averages more passes per 90 minutes. His wicked through ball for Davide Frattesi in the 2-1 win against Atalanta was one of the finest of the season. It led to a penalty, which of course Calhanoglu, impeccable from the spot, put away. His set-piece deliveries are the league’s best because, ballistically, few players can strike a ball as well as he can. Everyone remembers how Calha, now 30, burst onto the scene with that remarkable long-range free kick for Hamburg against Dortmund and he got Inter on their way in Naples on Sunday with the zippiest of hits. Only James Maddison and De Bruyne have scored more goals from outside the box in Europe’s top five leagues than the Turkey international in the past five years.

Nudging the ball to him for the opener was Nicolo Barella, who admitted: “Things haven’t been coming off for me lately. It’s been a bit of a hard time.” He hit the upright in Lisbon and hadn’t scored at all until Sunday. But here he was again, busy as ever and involved in all of Inter’s goals. His own was all about the playmaking from captain Lautaro, who pulled out wide, spotted his run and set him up. But Barella’s first touch to evade Leo Ostigard was exquisite and shifted the momentum definitively Inter’s way.

Only moments earlier the referee waved Osimhen’s claims for a penalty away. It was the second controversy of the evening after Lautaro appeared to rugby-tackle Stanislav Lobotka in the build-up to Inter’s first goal. Walter Mazzarri was so upset the Napoli coach didn’t appear in front of the media afterwards. His team played well, which only added more lustre to the scale and manner of Inter’s win as they moved back to the top in Serie A. “Tomorrow. they’ll write that Inter have no rivals,” Inzaghi said. “But when we were 3-0 down at half-time against Benfica, they were probably preparing other articles. It’s part of football. I’m used to it. We’re used to it.”

Regardless of the uncertainty surrounding their president, Steven Zhang, and Suning’s ability to hold onto the club beyond May, Inter’s aim to win a 20th Scudetto and earn a prestigious second star remains on course. Only Juventus can stop them. Right now, Inter are one of the most complete teams in Europe.

Too early for any predictions. Two years ago in this time of a year we were destroying everyone in the league. Lets wait and see what will happen in first three months of next year when we usually crumble and fail.
 

Besnik

La Grande Inter
La Grande Inter
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10 years of FIF
Too early for any predictions. Two years ago in this time of a year we were destroying everyone in the league. Lets wait and see what will happen in first three months of next year when we usually crumble and fail.

It doesn't seem likely to happen. I mean, everything indicates for a great Inter that is dominating in every aspect. We have the best attack in the league, best defence, we are doing also very well against top teams of the league and most important; this group seems to be very united and determinated for success.

Getting a striker in January would be a cherry on top of cake.
 
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