Monday August 7 2017
Inter's missing piece

Inter won't be overshadowed by city rivals Milan, writes Richard Hall, if they can get the final piece of the puzzle - a great full-back.

The Piazza Del Duomo marks the central point of the city, making sense geographically, artistically, socially and culturally. It is a development that has evolved over time and up until recently, it has been mirrored by its football clubs. The grace and power of both Milan and Inter has romantically embraced the world’s football community, but recent times have seen a tale of one city. The decline culminated when neither represented Italy in Europe, but the tides have turned and Milano is back.

Money has hit football harder than the Borgias hit Rome or the Medici hit Florence. Many may argue it’s even more ruthless these days, but it’s here and you either get on the train or you get off. Milan have shown this year that they are on the gravy train and they are coming back to where they belong.

Silvio Berlusconi has gone, but with their brilliant youth system and the fact that the Rossoneri Sport Investment Lux have signed Franck Kessie, Ricardo Rodriguez, Mateo Musacchio, Hakan Calhanoglu, Andrea Conti, Fabio Borini, Lucas Biglia, Andre Silva and Leonardo Bonucci, they are announcing themselves again.

So, what of Inter? Are they overshadowed by the Rossoneri? No, they certainly are not. Milan have done brilliantly, on paper it’s possibly incredible, but that is their journey and Inter started theirs under Erick Thohir to continue with Suning. They have spent big, made mistakes and now have a chance to do what they should have done last year: have a full pre-season. Roberto Mancini’s departure severely hampered the campaign and the heads of Coaches that rolled afterwards were a result of this.

Interisti can look towards the new campaign with hope. Luciano Spalletti has taken on the reins and is the perfect man for doing what Inter need. Firstly, he has the ability to quash the egos in the squad. After dealing with Francesco Totti, you’d think Gabriel Barbosa and Stevan Jovetic will be a breeze and the latter has even looked good in pre-season. The aim is to get the Nerazzurri to play with pace and through the acquisition of Borja Valero he seems to have found the final cog to make the team tick. He may not have cost €40m, but he even a Mercedes needs an indicator.

Joao Mario’s more advanced and more important role also offers hope and if Ivan Perisic accepts his new contract, then there are even more reasons to be optimistic. Mauro Icardi may eventually find his supply, but there still is a problem.

Ask any poor suffering regular who frequents the Meazza to watch the Nerazzurri and they will tell you this, the full back is an issue. Danilo D’Ambrosio is a classic example. He was lauded for replicating the performances (eventually) that he showed whilst at Torino. This was simply what he was employed to do, but it is the lack of quality in this position that consistently lets the team down. Hence, any good performance is heralded as a breakthrough, but the likes of Davide Santon, Cristian Ansaldi and of course Yuto Nagatomo have let the team down. One shouldn’t place the blame simply on their shoulders, but instead it goes much further back, from Jonathan and beyond.

This is the reason that fans of the Nerazzurri are not concerned by the incredible work done in the red and black half of Milan. They know that it takes time to form a team. The on-off deal with Nice’s Dalbert is far more pressing, because for the team to be able to play at Spalletti’s pace, it needs full-backs who can defend and break.

The success of Inter’s transfer window will depend on the ability to acquire quality full-backs. The future of Perisic is testimony to this, as his defensive contributions have been key in covering the gaps.

The Piazza Duomo wasn’t built overnight, it was a special, artistic and embryonic development that now shapes Milan. For Inter to have their completed project, they don’t need a new blueprint, they just need to finish the job they have already started.

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Have your say...
You're going to sign Schick. Big signing.
on the 10th August, 2017 at 12:50am
Only Inter would ship,out Banega, try their damndest to ship out Gary Medel when D'ambrosio is still around to stink up the place. I don't care who they buy as long as he is in the team, they will always be at least 1 man short.
on the 9th August, 2017 at 7:12pm
CB, RB and RW and we're set to compete. Candreva & D'Ambrosio on the right just isnt good enough.
on the 9th August, 2017 at 3:37pm
More than a missing piece; they have to clear out the clutter. Everywhere.
on the 8th August, 2017 at 2:57pm
danilo is good enough. he improved and kept his level last year. dalbert is very needed. his speed is crazy!! sales determine the outcome but currently deep and strong squad!! forza inter
on the 8th August, 2017 at 11:25am
Excellent Article
on the 7th August, 2017 at 10:46pm
Nice article. I do have a soft spot for Nagatomo though! Even with his performances as of late...
on the 7th August, 2017 at 6:43pm
Dalbert seems like a good acquisition and a decent upgrade knowing his young age. One more fullback is required by inter.. Darmian, Aurier, Cancelo will prove lethal than the existing lot we have in our squad. Spalletti is the best coach to set the team dynamics in order which has been missing since quite a while. FORZA INTER!!
on the 7th August, 2017 at 3:25pm
Dalbert looks very good, hope he adapts to Serie A quickly.

I like D'Ambrosio on the other side, not the best but he works hard, fights hard for Inter, the shirt means something to him, so he'd still be my first choice right back this season since we only have domestic matches.

But I also like the names mentioned, Aurier and Cancelo, or push Candreva into RB/RWB.

Hope Gabigol stays!!!
on the 7th August, 2017 at 11:35am
Serge Aurier might be the 2nd fullback we sign, the only problem is that he`s NON-EU so he would take up the 2nd NON-EU spot after Dalbert. We are waiting to see what happens on the mercato until late August before blocking us.

For instance, Lucas Lima`s contract expires on 31.12.2017 and he`s also NON-EU.
on the 7th August, 2017 at 10:03am
With all due respect to Dalbert (I have never seen him play before), I agree that Brazil produces fantastic fullbacks, but to say that the country "never" gets it wrong is just naive, and as an Inter fan you only need to look back to a few years ago, i.e. Jonathan.
on the 7th August, 2017 at 8:06am
well, first of all, the very good thing that happened with inter is spalletti. It is a match made in heaven. Up next simeone, who knows?!. Basics first, so it starts from defence. 1 (dalbert) done 2 more to go!, yes darmian on right side and garay on centre. And then if there's nothing more, i will be more than happy. BRING ON RED&BLACK DEVILISH NEIGHBOR!! FORZA INTER
on the 7th August, 2017 at 8:04am
Dalbert is a welcome addition. They need one more starting fullback. some marauder type Maicon on the right. They need to splash the cash fast on this. With that one missing piece and another midfielder they will have a fair shot at the CL and beyond
on the 7th August, 2017 at 7:40am
I dont know this dalbert guy but anyhting seems like an upgrade, besides hes brazilian ,and that country never gets it wrong with full backs
on the 7th August, 2017 at 7:09am
They need 2 top full-backs to be honest. That's been the issue with Inter for years now.

The rest of the squad looks pretty good if Spalletti can toughen them up a bit.
on the 7th August, 2017 at 1:35am

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