INTER MILAN VS NAPOLI
League leaders Napoli face one of their toughest tests of the new Serie A season so far as they look to defend their unbeaten run away at the champions Inter Milan.
Inter Milan come into this game on the back of a 1-1 draw against Stefano Pioli’s AC Milan in the league. Everyone expected this game to be tight and tense and that’s just how the 90-minutes played out.
The second half was even tighter and the game, in the end, fizzed out to a 1-1 draw. That result only helped Napoli in the end as the league leaders didn’t lose any ground in the race for the Serie A title.
📌 Training report
— Official SSC Napoli (@en_sscnapoli) November 13, 2021
Napoli, on the other hand, drew 1-1 against Igor Tudor’s Hellas Verona in the league. The Partinopei would have been expecting to beat Verona, especially in their own backyard, but instead, they had to settle for a share of the spoils.
In 34 head-to-head encounters between the two sides, the record is fairly even. Inter Milan have won 12 games, lost 13 and drawn nine. Inter Milan need a win this weekend to reduce the game between the two clubs to 4 points but the home side have some injuries affecting key first-team players.
Inter Milan will likely be without their top scorer Ediz Dzeko, and they are up against the best defence in the league on Sunday.
There are concerns over the availability of multiple other first-team players. Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez, centre-back Stefan de Vrij, Alessandro Bastoni and Inter’s star striker Lautaro Martinez.
Inter Milan Predicted Lineup (3-5-2): Samir Handanovic, Milan Skriniar, Andrea Ranocchia, Federico Dimarco, Matteo Darmian, Nicolo Barella, Marcelo Brozovic, Hakan Calhanoglu, Ivan Perisic, Lautaro Martinez, Joaquin Correa
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Nerazzurri hard at it ahead of #InterNapoli! 📷
— Inter 🏆🇮🇹 (@Inter_en) November 18, 2021
Meanwhile, Napoli could be without German midfielder Diego Demme. Other than that the Partinopei have a clean bill of health, and Pioli will be much happier of the two managers.
Napoli Predicted Lineup (4-2-3-1): David Ospina, Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Amir Rrahmani, Kalidou Koulibaly, Mario Rui, Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa, Fabian Ruiz, Hirving Lozano, Piotr Zielinski, Lorenzo Insigne, Victor Osimhen
Lautaro Martinez played a crucial role in Inter’s romp to the title last season under Antonio Conte and playing alongside Romelu Lukaku (now at Chelsea).
Conte and Lukaku have since left, but Martinez’s importance to the Nerazzurri has not diminished. Now playing alongside Edin Dzeko, the Argentine will be one of the most important players as Inter seek to put their title defence campaign back on track.
Having had a season to get used to the pace of Serie A, Victor Osimhen has had a fantastic start to the new season. He is at the heart of Napoli’s table-topping attack that has plundered 24 goals. He will be a player to watch for Napoli as they take on Champions Inter Milan at the San Siro.
To be fair, Inter Milan have been miles away from the last season’s form in this term of the Serie A, but they can still be a formidable force on their day against any opposition in the league.
Credit must be given to manager Simone Inzaghi for the work he has done so far, especially given the fact that Inter Milan sold two important players in the summer in the form of Achraf Hakimi and Romelu Lukaku.
However, Napoli are yet to lose in Serie A this season and look full of confidence, while Inter Milan have some injury concerns that will have an impact on how they perform on Sunday.
Napoli have by far the best defence in the league. They have allowed only four goals in twelve league outings this term. However, the Partinopei dropped the ball last time out, playing only a 1-1 draw at home to Verona. A close match is on the cards, and FootTheBall says, Inter Milan 1-2 Napoli.