Authors Note: Before I get into the article first and foremost I’d like to thank you all for being patient with me while I’ve been taking care of myself and getting back where I need to be mentally. Also thank you to my brother, mentor and fellow journalist Eliot for helping get me back to where I need to be with my articles and getting me back into it. So thank you all. Now let’s get into this bad boy.
After their win against Lazio on Sunday Inter compete against in what will be a pivitol matchup against their rivals Milan. At the start of the season Milan won the first installment. Then in a random occurrence Inter took on Milan in the Coppa Italia where Inter won that match. This match will be a piviotal match as this could set up Inter for winning the title so it will be imperative they win this match. Overall Milan have the better record in the derby della mandonina. Milan on the other hand are coming off a loss against Spezia. Inter will look to maintain momentum while Milan look to get back into the winners circle. If Milan lose here and lose to Roma next week and Inter maintain their momentum they can kiss their title hopes potentially goodbye. Here is how these two sides stack up against each other and what they’ll need to do to beat one another.
In this match pretty much expect the same cast of characters in the lineup. In goal will be none other than Samir Handanovic who has come under a lot of scrutiny due to his decling performance. This is due to his age and declining cordination. But at times he looks like his old self. Also he has celebrated his 500th match with the club. On the defense will be Bastoni though struggling defensively he does a great job attacking wise. If he can work on the defensive aspect as well he will be a major threat going forward. Also expect on seeing Milan Skriniar and Devrij after Skriniar found his form in the back three formation it’s like seeing these two in the back four back when Spalletti was at the helm. They are working in sync with one another and working well at tackling and getting the ball back to set up counter attacks for Inter. This is defense is the strongest it’s ever been for quite sometime. On the wingbacks expect to see Young and Perisic play in this area. Both of these two do a great job creating chances and at times defending. In the midfield expect Barella, Brozovic and Vidal. These players do a great job creating chances and occassionally finding the back of the net. But the key player who has gone above and beyond in this position is Barella who at times is the only midfielder doing anything substancial. Up top will be the killer duo of Lukaku and Martinez who work like a well oiled machine and Lukaku has celebrated his 300th carrer goal. Lukaku will be the main player to look out for in this match.
In this match expect the following players to start for Milan. In goal will be Antonio Donnurumma who has been the main keeper for Milan. Due to being younger than Handanovic gives him the edge in this area. He is also amazing at stopping some complicated chances taken on him which Handanovic has a hard time stopping but that’s due to age. Defensively plan to see a back four of the following players. Hernadez, Romagnoli, Stanga and Calabria will more than likely be starting. These players are the backbone of their defense especially veteran Romagnoli. These players are aggressive but effective at getting the ball back from the opposition and setting up counter attacks which is one thing they’re better at than Inter at times. But these players are very cohesive except occasional blunders. In the midfield expect to see Tonali, Kessie and Krunic. These players are solid in creating chances for the attack though Tonali needs to step it up but in my opinion it was a bad move to go to a bigger club to quickly especially due to the high standards set for him. But overall these players are amazing together. In the attack you’ll see Zlatan who has taken a leadership roll and getting this struggling team back into shape despite though his ego tends to get him into trouble so he’ll need to keep that in check but he has moments of brilliance and is good at scoring goals. Also expect to see Mandzukic and Maldini start as well who are solid goal scorers as well.
Inter to do’s
Be aggressive on the attack
Don’t leave the match until late
In this match Inter have several things they will need to do if they have any hopes of beating Milan. The first will be imperative the first is to isolate Zlatan. If you take out their leader everyone else will lose momentum and have a hard time maintaining their aggressive tactics. Also with him isolated it will be harder for them to find the back of the net. But he may not start based on what happened in the Coppa Italia and they’d want to avoid conflict but this is the derby after all so drama is bound to happen. The next thing is Inter will need to be aggressive on the attack. If they take a more resevered approach like they do normally Milan will take advantage of that and will run circles around them. So Inter need to take as many chances as possible and be able to finish them as well to score and to secure the points. The last thing they will need to do is not leave this match until the end. Meaning is they need to get a solid goal lead early on because if Milan score early it will be difficult for them to get back into it has Milan are a strong side and will be easily capable of stopping them defensively so if they don’t get things started early it could cost them in the end.
Milan to do’s
Keep Zlatan controlled
Keep up their strong counter attacks
The first thing Milan will need to do is to stop Barella who is one of the most prolific players on Inter. He is quick, agile and is highly capable of finding those tight spaces which makes him deadly. If he is isolated unless some of the other midfielders step in it will leave Martinez to create the chances as he at times as had to play dual rolls which takes him out of goal scoring contention as he’ll have to set up Lukaku and the others which keeps him from his main position. The next will be to keep Zlatan in check because if he gets to aggressive and his ego gets in the way it could cause him to get a red card which with him out of the equation makes things difficult as they lose their main leadership. So it will be crucial to keep his ego in check. The last thing is keep up creating their stellar counter attacks. This is one area they kill it in because once they get on the counters Inter have a hard time keeping up to defend them. So keeping up in this area is paramount.
Scoreline Inter 2 Milan 1
In my opinion Inter will win this match as they will be more rested than Milan who will have just played in the Europa League and depending on who they started some of their key players maybe fatigued which will be an issue. Also Inter in this match as they finally are in the top spot will look to keep it and will play more aggressive and they will look to widen their gap and seperate away from Milan. This match however will still be a close one I see a goal from Zlatan and a goal from Lukaku and Martinez.
Inter projected 3-5-2
Def Bastoni, Skriniar, Devrij
Mid Young, Barella, Brozovic, Vidal, Perisic
Attack Lukaku and Martinez
Ac Milan projected 4-3-3
Def Hernadez, Romagnoli, Stanga, Calabria
Mid Tonali, Kessie, Krunic
Attack Maldini, Zlatan, Mandzukic
Stadium San Siro
Place Milan Italy
Date Febuary 21st
Time 8am Usa 2pm Uk 3pm Italy