Inter Milan put three past Napoli at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium
By Ed Emeanua
Meret; Di Lorenzo, Rrahmani, Ostigard, Natan (87′ Zerbin); Anguissa, Lobotka (75′ Zielinski), Elmas (75′ Lindstrom); Politano (68′ Raspadori), Osimhen, Kvaratskhelia (Idasiak, Gollini, Demme, Juan Jesus, Simeone, Cajuste, Gaetano) Coach: Mazzarri
INTER (3-5-2): Sommer; Darmian (86′ Bisseck), De Vrij (18′ Carlos Augusto), Acerbi; Dumfries (77′ Cuadrado), Barella, Calhanoglu, Mkhitaryan (77′ Frattesi), Dimarco; Thuram (86′ Arnautovic), Lautaro Martinez (Di Gennaro, Audero, Sensi, Klaassen, Asllani, Agoumé, Stabile, Sanchez) Coach: S. Inzaghi
REFEREE: Mr. Massa from Imperia
NOTES: Yellow Cards: Elmas, Anguissa (N); Mkhitaryan, Darmian, Thuram (I); Added Time: 1st Half 2′, 2nd Half 3′
Victor Osimhen fires blank as Inter Milan edges Napoli 3-0 at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium Sunday night
Victor Osimhen may have regained his starting spot in the center of Napoli frontline, but the gangling Nigerian striker could only manage firing a few blanks as Inter Milan recorded a commanding 3-0 away win.
Inter put up an overpowering showing at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium Sunday night to down Napoli and reinforce their position on the summit of Serie A table.
The Nerazzurri showcased their Scudetto ambitions with sublime precise finishing, despite the home team’s apparent resolve to get any type of result from their home turf.
Hakan Calhanoglu, Nicoló Barella, and Marcus Thuram stamped their names on the scoresheet in a game that is evidently the Nerazzurri most spectacular showing this term, including with their 5-1 demolition of rivals, AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina in September.
Walter Mazzarri definitely has a yeoman’s job up his sleeves despite his victorious start with Napoli last week. It is obvious that the man from Tuscany inherited an incomplete team, with a leaky backline, as the Azzurri have let in eight goals in just three outings since his Napoli return.
To make matters worst, his two confirmed left backs were both unplayable because of injuries, leaving him the option of deploying center back Natan to the left of his backline.
Victor Osimhen returned to his starting position in the middle of the forward line, but it was obvious that the Nigerian striker is still not in his prime shape.
Simone Inzaghi kept the same lineup he deployed a week ago after changing out several of his regulars in the mid-week Champions League fixture. As a result, Inter were therefore very crisp and that shored up the difference between the two sides as the game came down to the wire.
Yet, it was Napoli began the match spritely. With just 2.9 minutes into the game, Elijf Elmas produced a breathtaking shot from outside the box, forcing Yann Sommer to make make a save. Just as the effort from Macedonian midfielder was spectacular, the Swiss goalie’s response was stunning and established Sommer’s worth in Inter’s arsenal this season.
Eighteen minutes into the fray, Stefan De Vrij injured his abductor and was substituted for Carlos Augusto. But Matteo Politano hit terrific screamer that could have altered the outcome of the game crashed into the crossbar.
Before then, Inter had found the net through Thuram only to see their goal disallowed for offside. However, on the 43rd minute of the game, Calhanoglu broke the deadlock with a pristinely struck right foot missile. The Turk whipped the ball past Alex Meret after being found by Barella, who in had received the ball from Denzel Dumfries.
Napoli reacted but Sommer was once again, a major roadblock to Napoli’s ability to find the net. The Inter goalkeeper tipped to safety an bent Khvicha Kvaratskhelia cannon with his finger on 57 minutes.
Right after the one-hour mark, Inter struck again. The Nerazzurri’s second goal was conception of the brilliant Lautaro Martinez. El Toro’s pass from the left was snatched by Barella in the middle of the box. The diminutive midfielder then and shooting his team 2-0 ahead.
Thuram then placed his brand on the scoreline in the 85th minute. The Frenchman merely had to nudge the ball into the back of the net from a Juan Cuadrado splitting pass, as the Napoli back line appeared to have been caught completely off their stride.
Napoli oiled up their attack line the game with a radical-offensive setup as Giacomo Raspadori, Piotr Zielinski and Jesper Lindstrom were added to compliment Osimhen and Kvaratskhelia upfront, but the Partenopei still failed to find the net.
Napoli are now 11 points adrift from the summit of the Serie-A placement. Napoli may as well has ceded their throne to a new champion this early on in the Serie A season.