Having drawn and lost their previous two games in all competitions, the Inter players set foot on the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza soil on Saturday evening knowing that they needed to address their finishing problems against Bologna, so as not to drop more points due to ineffectiveness in front of goal, an issue that prevented Simone Inzaghi’s side from getting all the three points against both Sampdoria and Real Madrid.
However, the Biscione made his intentions clear since the opening few minutes and Lautaro Martinez made no mistake when he was asked to meet a Denzel Dumfries cross and score the opener. The roar that the Meazza produced to celebrate suggested that it was more than a simple goal against a mid-table team, but rather a reaction that everyone was expecting after a frustrating Champions League debut.
And although it may sound absurd, Bologna also deserve a mention. Just like the Serie A table suggested before the game, Sinisa Mihajlovic has assembled a very organized side which has benefit from Marko Arnautovic’s link-up play, as the Austrian seemed the man the Rossoblu needed in order to exploit their offensive potential without losing balance.
But unfortunately for them, confidence and motivation can often make the difference at this level, especially when combined with the quality Inter can boast. The Rossoblu’s defence began to crumble when they conceded twice in the space of five minutes, providing Milan Skriniar and Nicolo Barella with the chance to wrap up a match which was completely one-sided in the second half, meaning that the Felsinei coach still have to craft a resilient mindset that Bologna will definitely need when they face stronger opponents.
On the other hand, Inter seem to have preserved the winning mentality that was built under Antonio Conte, a feature which allowed the Beneamata to endure difficult times and become aware of their strength before lifting the Scudetto trophy. Such foundations are still there and are being passed on to the new arrivals, as Dumfries started to show glimpses of his talent and Federico Dimarco is proving able to boost the Nerazzurri’s offensive play with his quality left foot.
But crucially, Inter‘s most representative players are also stepping up – during their 18th straight home win in Serie A, Barella was involved in a goal for the fourth consecutive game, while Lautaro has managed to score in each of his last four Serie A appearances for the first time.
Several things need to be improved and there’ll be plenty of other obstacles awaiting Inter during the season, starting from the mid-week trip to Fiorentina, but the Biscione still seem equipped with everything they need to be Scudetto contenders once again: a young, smart coach; strong players; desire; motivation, and above all, the awareness that every slip-up can teach you something.
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