Serie A regrets Inter. Reading the comments in various sports newspapers in the days after the Milan derby, many reporters agreed: “Inter were the anti-Naples”. That this is true, in times of Capitoline incompleteness (on both Sarri’s and Mou’s side) stabbing the old lady’s and AC Milan’s fugitives, is little but certain. But their use of the imperfect is spot on: while Napoli sails like a three-masted galleon, Inter have discovered an inner weakness that often betrays them at crucial moments; hence the Nerazzurri could no longer be the anti-Naples. The Neapolitans fly without a “machine of the north” being able to mobilize. It would be better if Saviano commented on PM Santoriello’s at least inappropriate remarks, rather than drawing conclusions about a football policy design that the Scudetto should stay at the Milan-Turin game. I repeat: real and imaginary conspiracies cannot harm a flying team, which is currently the best in Europe. And then, to be honest, the ‘Machine of the North’ went off the road at the first corner, retiring from what now seems a mere formality. Back at Inter, no longer opponents of Neapolitan dominance, they are still the formation that, during these weeks of post-World Cup recovery, have shown themselves to be the closest to Champions League performances, even beating the league leaders. And on the other hand, coming back to the issue of weakness, he threw away five points (against Monza and Empoli) which would make today’s pursuit less utopian. Now, if everything went according to plan, that is, with Napoli triumphant and Inter aloof, but second, Zhang and those in charge would gather an all too seldom mentioned fact: in the last four seasons, Inter became runners-up three times.
Serie A, Inter’s regrets, Zhang’s regrets
A numerical fact it would be good to investigate: in the first season, Conte saw the tricolor go to CR7 and Sarri, which they made up for the following year; Inzaghi came with a team that was missing some elements but was still competitive. The Scudetto ended with the Cousins, weaker on paper (today we have the certificate of piolist’s miracle) and winner with two points, therefore just a shot away from victory; This year there is a risk of winning Silver by a good margin, but with a eleven that according to leading analysts “is still higher than that of a side that has robbed itself of six key players” like Napoli, admirably restored by Spalletti was set up, whose work no one would have believed except a haruspex. Now, apart from the recent triumph of the Juventus epic, which has never really been threatened by the Biscione, Zhang has the photo in mind that shows what could have been and what could not have been. Inter’s snapshot in June 2021 is as follows: one of the best coaches in Europe is at the helm, perfectly in symbiosis with his eleven; the certainty and conviction of being able to dominate in Italy and compete in Europe with a few quality purchases. Instead comes the self-funding dictated by Chinese communist capitalism, which no longer believes in investing in football. However, the real damage was done by Steven, like it or not: instead of folding and Inter continuing a growth project aimed at bringing the Nerazzurri back into the leagueelite ballonara preferred to try the impossible: run a football club in the 21st century without lira. Looking back, he will see the magnificent 2021 Scudetto between the second places that will mark his presidency. The two Super Cups and Italian Cup thrown at the wall are cold consolation, the result of Inzaghi’s work and nothing else. Zhang had great credit for putting Inter back on the road to success but he was not far-sighted when all factors showed him the only way to step aside. He tried to fight back in the name of an entrepreneurial mentality that clings to an economic system different from ours. He did not prove to be capable of acting and self-confident like many descendants of the new economy Chinese, but messenger of a humble father entrusted with the toy loved and now disowned by the Chinese Communist Party: football.
Serie A, Inter regrets, the plan for the near future
Of course, in the story that we have given, we absolutely must say a few words about Inzaghi. Simone has proven himself to be a knockout cannibal and fans are hoping he’ll prove himself as such in a few days’ game against Porto. At the same time, he has shown he doesn’t have the temperament of a longtime leader to look past a team’s weaknesses and bail them out in the tricky moments of a twenty-team championship, which is physiologically tiring. We need to understand whether the setbacks of these two seasons are part of a growth process or represent its limit. The management and a large part of the supporters believe in him, which is why extra time starts automatically with the Champions League qualification. Player chapter: Dumfries is the big victim (but beware, he devalues on the bench), Brozovic the one to think about (Inter is even filmed without him), Lautaro the one who barricades himself in Eppan. A Skriniar heir is sought in defense (that of de Vrij would also be needed), while Acerbi’s redemption is formalized. Barella sees a future as captain and Calhanoglu is on the verge of renewal. Eventually, Lukaku’s stay was opened up, but only through a significant discount from the blues linked to a loan extension.