It has by no means been a quiet summer in Italian football. Italy's shock group stage exit from the World Cup and Antonio Conte’s as yet unexplained departure from Juventus have certainly been the main headline grabbers.
However, things have been fairly low-key at Inter where the club has opted for evolution over revolution despite the somewhat disappointing previous campaign. The departure of the Argentine contingent has left behind a hole in the squad that is now being filled in a calculated manner.
Nemanja Vidic was the chief arrival for the new season, but the Serbian was already signed back in February. French midfielder Yann M’Vila, who was once subject of interest from the likes of Arsenal and Liverpool, arrived on loan from Rubin Kazan.
Inter President Erick Thohir’s penchant for the Premier League is well known, and the Nerazzurri’s next targets are in England with both Gary Medel of Cardiff and former Roma frontman Dani Osvaldo close to joining the club.
In the two big friendlies the Serpenti have played so far, Coach Walter Mazzarri, who signed a one-year contract extension until the end of the 2016 season, has stuck with a three-man defence. Vidic has played alongside Juan Jesus and new club captain Andrea Ranocchia.
Mazzarri spoke in the close season of trailing a back-four, but the arrival of Brazilian youngster Dodo and early pre-season work indicates that his preference will be perfecting the 3-5-2. Mateo Kovacic, of whom so much is expected, is yet to feature and he would be the key in bringing creativity to the midfield.
The start of the Serie A season is still a month away, but Inter's first competitive game will be the Europa League play-off round tie in three weeks' time. For once, it looks like Inter are eager to tie up most of their transfer activity fairly early.
With many of the arrivals seemingly already sorted, technical director Piero Ausilio will also be looking to clear out some of the deadwood in the squad. The likes of Ezequiel Schelotto, Joel Obi, Matias Silvestre and even Diego Laxalt are players who will likely be sourced out.
Off the pitch, Thohir's management team has also grown with Michael Bolingbroke and Dan Chard joining the commercial team with a view to increase Inter's revenue stream. A new club logo was also unveiled earlier this summer symptomatic of the new management’s wide-reaching aims for change, though one could spend hours spotting the difference between the two.
The club has made steady progress so far this summer, and the strategy is one of consolidation. It is still too early to make any predictions, but the target this year seems to be to get as close to a top three spot as possible.