Home Analysis Why Inter struggles against lesser teams?

Why Inter struggles against lesser teams?


The Aftermath: Inter 0 – Sampdoria 0

Yesterday Inter Worldwide analysed the disappointing match against Sampdoria where the Nerazzurri again dropped points against a low tier team in Serie A. However, fans and pundits have again raised the question: Why Inzaghi’s Inter struggles to perform against these teams?

La Curva Nord reacts

On Tuesday La Curva Nord 69 posted a very strong statement against Inzaghi and his team: “The dull draw obtained in Genoa against the bottom of the class demonstrated once again that Mr. Inzaghi is probably unable to motivate the lads for matches with the “smaller” teams. The attitude of a provincial team was shown in the second half, when instead of risking the three strikers, he remains clinging to his form; a risk to be taken also because the draw was of no use to anyone.”

Then they added: “We are Inter, it is the opponent who must fear us, we should attack and demonstrate superiority and instead we look like a middle-ranked team that can be fine with an away draw…”

The Numbers of Inter against “lesser” teams in 2023

In 2023 Inter have played ten games between Serie A, Coppa Italia and Supercoppa. In those games the Nerazzurri achieved seven victories, two draws and one defeat. It doesn’t see too bad to be fair. However, the problem is that our struggles has always been against low tier teams. Lets check it:

Monza vs Inter 2-2 (D)
Inter vs Parma (Coppa) 1-0 on extra time (W)
Inter vs Hellas 1-0 (W)
Empoli vs Inter 1-0 (L)
Inter vs Cremonese 2-1 (W)
Sampdoria vs Inter 0-0 (D)

Very poor results, considering that the three wins were very tight and with awful performances. We struggled until the end of those games.

The reasons: Tactical, Technical and Motivational

To explain the causes of these failures, let’s divide the issues in three different types. The first and most important one is the tactical approach Inzaghi applies (or not) against these teams. Inzaghi doesn’t prepare well as we find it hard to exploit our opponents weaknesses in defense. He just tells the team to play the same football they always have. Also, Inzaghi ignores that most teams are well prepared to face us and have studied Inter style of play. The best example of it: he never changes formation before or during the game. Against teams that defend in a low block he should add more power in attack and try different tactics.

At the technical level Inter lacks players with dribbling abilities and speed to break against teams that choose to rely on pure defense.  In a table released by Kickest.it Inter is the team that less attempts and completed dribbles in all Serie A. In fact, in the last two seasons we have lost the only players that have those skills: Hakimi, Perisic and Alexis Sanchez. Now there is no one in the bench (not even to mention Correa) who can give the team different answers in close games.

Last but not least, since the departure of Conte this Inter team has declined a lot in focus and mentality. Several times the team started the game thinking they have already won it. However, when things go wrong the players enter in a frustrating mood that limits their abilities to score and perform. This especially happens to the core players like Barella, Lautaro, Bastoni and Hakan. Inzaghi has failed to encourage the players to be determined enough to win not only against the big rivals but everyone.

Questions have been raised at Inter HQ

 La Gazzetta dello Sport published an article where it said that Inter management is worried because of these inconsistent performances. The main concern is that the club could struggle in the fight to reach top 4. This is a very different scenario than the one expected by the club which was to fight until the end for scudetto. That is why they are considering the performance of the coach. It all will depend on how Inter ends the season.