Sunday February 4 2018
No signs of life at Inter

The Beneamata’s lack of character against Crotone means that both the club and Luciano Spalletti are running out of time, writes Vilizar Yakimov.

“We have a weak character and are below par in more or less every area”. Those were Luciano Spalletti’s words after Inter’s latest abysmal display against Walter Zenga’s Crotone. Unfortunately for their tifosi, the Beneamata proved to be incapable of getting results under pressure in recent years, as they failed to produce time and time again.

The Nerazzurri are now without a win in 10 games in all competition, as they only managed to scrape past Pordenone after penalties in the Coppa Italia, but arguably the only thing that is worse than the results is the team’s performance.

Inter haven’t scored more than one goal in a game since December 3, so it’s completely understandable that the almost 50,000 home crowd was expecting a response against Crotone. Instead, they received yet another contender for the ‘worst performance of the season’ award, as Inter was once again slow, predictable, error prone, as well as showing their lack of quality.

It really is hard to find a positive in the Nerazzurri’s performances right now, as the whole midfield was yet again sluggish in possession and had no clue how to trouble the visitors’ backline. It’s true that the absence of club captain and top goalscorer Mauro Icardi didn’t help Inter’s cause, but as previous games showed, even a proven predator like the Argentinian can’t make the difference when the ball is moved so slowly by the whole team. Icardi’s replacement Eder was probably Inter’s best player on the pitch, as the ex-Sampdoria man’s mobility made him the only player that Crotone struggled to defend against.

It is more than clear that Spalletti must change things for the next games. Eder probably deserves a chance to start alongside Icardi in expense of any of the attacking midfield trio, which is underperforming heavily in recent weeks.

Ivan Perisic, Antonio Candreva and Marcelo Brozovic do have the quality to change a game, but even Spalletti admitted that “a few of the players who can make the difference and give that extra quality are below par”.

This also means that it’s probably already time for new signing Rafinha to start, as both Brozovic and Borja Valero have proved incapable of bringing the goods in the trequartista position. Inter’s lack of creativity also means that Joao Cancelo should be starting every game at least for the time being, as the Portuguese international’s dribbling and crossing ability will add some unpredictability.

After starting the season so well and being top of the table until the start of December, the Nerazzurri now risk turning into a complete fiasco. A top four finish is a must and it really is anachievable target, but Inter need to change and need to do it fast. Spalletti’s men are running out of time and while some might argue that the next few rounds, in which they face Bologna, Genoa and Benevento, are all winnable fixtures, what does “winnable” mean when you failed to win 10 games in a row?

The truth is that regardless of the technical or tactical choices that Spalletti makes, Inter do look like a team that lacks character and determination. The players seem to crack in tense situations and fear strikes throughout the side as soon as they areput under pressure. Even when the team is leading, they are unable to put a game to bed and tend to make costly mistakes in the final stages.

There were no signs of progress against Crotone, as shortly after Inter conceded the equaliser in the second half, it seemed like the visitors were more likely to win the game. As ifthat wasn’t bizarre enough, Zenga’s men also looked like the side who wanted it more, which is absolutely outrageous and intolerable for a team of Inter’s calibre.

It is clear that Spalletti is already trying to make changes both to the starting line-up and the players’ roles, but can he insert character and self-beliefin a team that is showing no signs of that right now? You better hurry, Luciano. Time is running out.

Have your say...
Inter hopes?
On the other hand Spalletti is a much better coach than Gattuso, but it is aloso true that the sooner they rebuild, forgetting Icardi's constant calls to leave, the better.
on the 5th February, 2018 at 9:44pm
All the "rats" may be will leave the sinking ship, starting with star player Icardi.............
Real Madrid bound?
on the 5th February, 2018 at 7:59pm
It`s the loser mentality of the players` from last season: just like they stopped believing before the end and did not give a damn on purpose not to make it into the EL.

Coach should also grow some balls and settle for nothing less than a win! Remind them how to pass and support each other in attack. Inter became a one dimensional cross-and-hope team.

Instead of scoring 1 goal and parking the bus, they should aim for 3-0 before wasting time. Disgraceful attitude, some players should be fined.
on the 5th February, 2018 at 3:01pm
Inter are too predictable.... a top club is always a top club, however when a club try to act like a big one. they usually fall very hard when they do. the team have to go back to the basics instead of brining the Chinese money to help them stay on top. I said it at the beginning of the season, once they loose one game, the ripple effect will start and they will finish 6th to 8th.

I was never convinced by them, even when they had Ronaldo playing for them...
on the 5th February, 2018 at 1:05pm
chill out biancorosso when we get going will collate 50 trophies in 5 years including trebles something that takes you lot decades.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 10:42pm
The problem lies with the management tbh. There were three crucial positions to be covered during January, and all they managed to do is get the one in CB. Pastore could have been the other one, and some one to cover for Icardi, because Eder doesn't fit the system where he has to play alongside Perisic & Candreva. Management simply weren't convincing enough to fill the gaps toward achieving club's goals fot this season.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 7:31pm
the problems the Inter side currently having erupted into chaotic ones. There is off & on the field tactic&tecnique problems. One big important management thing is not forget the team's need in last few years. When you sell a starred position player like kovacic, then in return you brought you buy hernanes cause you know there is need. But when you forget it too long then you say we dont need pastore. Things not working, you dont add immeadiate inthusiasm by giving young hungry players like rafinh. dalbart, cancelo priority. And eder showed that in 20 hours of playing time you give him 2o minutes he scored. You treat someone as a god, in the end he(icardi) he started behaving lile god. All in all spalletti's small club mentality been showned. Simeone needed coming next season.....
on the 4th February, 2018 at 3:23pm
Leaders set the tone for the rest of the team's character, desire, skill level and articulate what high standards look like in practice. Juve have Buffon and Roma used to have Totti.
Inter have Icardi. How about Handanovic as team captain marshalling his troops? It won't solve everything though. As for Juve we better learn from our CL debacles.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 1:42pm
Surely the issue is the lack of goalscorers virtually all the goals this season have come from perisic and icardi making over dependant on 2 players to score the goals. In the top 6 only roma have a poorer score goal scoring record than inter. Rather than getting angry at icardi surely serious questions need to be asked of candreva and eder and why instead of going for another forward the management went for rafinha.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 12:48pm
Good bye Championship League. Good bye Icardi. He is going to do a Wanda.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 12:21pm
Go easy, it's not their fault, it's never their fault, it's always someone elses fault.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 12:18pm
I did not know too much about Dalbert but Inter fans were very excited re his signing. Cancelo at Valencia was the best right back in the league, But both are playing 2nd fiddle to far inferior players. I cannot stand Candreva's indecisiveness as too many touches before crossing should annoy Icardi. Brozovic, I don't get at all. Rafinha, Vecino & Valero seems like a good midfield with Cancelo n Dalbert as wingbacks. Perisic, Eder & Icardi complete what looks like a pacier & creative side
on the 4th February, 2018 at 11:50am
Now they'll sack Spalletti think its managers fault again. Just get rid of Icardi, looks like he is a leech
on the 4th February, 2018 at 11:29am
Inter are a circus club. They never learn. Too bad.
on the 4th February, 2018 at 10:58am

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