Monday September 23 2019
Three is the magic number

We’re only four rounds in and already the Scudetto is a three-horse race, as Football Italia Chief Correspondent Richard Hall rounds up the weekend action.

All eyes were on the Derby Della Madonnina this weekend, as Inter faced what was to be their first real test and passed it with flying colours.

San Siro would once again supply the choreography, the noise and the entertainment, as the two Milan clubs battled it out, with two new Coaches and two new projects. The result would send a message to the others contesting this year’s Scudetto and indicate that there would be no room for error. Juventus and Napoli would respond with gusto and the race is now certainly on. After years of Juve dominance and ultimately doomed Napoli title challenges, it's an exciting prospect to see a title race worth the name in Serie A. It's better for everyone - for fans of the clubs in the race and for neutrals, who might also be able to use Ladbrokes promo codes to further their investment. It appeared the 2019-20 season was going to be an interesting one before a ball was kicked and even just a few weeks into the season, that prediction looks like coming

In the end Inter looked much more composed, much more aggressive and much more capable. Danilo D’Ambrosio perhaps hit the nail on the head when he said after the game that Inter simply wanted it more. It certainly looked that way and goals from Marcelo Brozovic and Romelu Lukaku meant that the Nerazzurri took the spoils. Antonio Conte had let his players know that the performance against Slavia Prague in midweek had been insufficient, and they responded with a dominating display.

The result means that Inter have now won four games out of four and certainly look to have a new resolve about them. Determined not to settle for anything less than three points, Conte seems still far from happy about the level his team is playing at, even though they are winning. What should Milan and Marco Giampaolo say, then? This Inter already has the hallmarks of a Conte team, a clear idea of what to do when in possession and when chasing the game. The Rossoneri are also under a new Coach, but if Giampaolo had a plan for how they should play, it doesn’t seem to have reached the squad.

The display has now convinced many that Inter just might be able to push Juventus all the way to the end.

The Champions had played earlier in the day and laboured to overcome Hellas Verona. Maurizio Sarri admitted that his team are still under construction and there were still many areas that needed ironing out. For The Old Lady, the important thing was the three points so that they could keep Inter in their sights.

The pressure now went onto Napoli, but it didn’t show. They tore apart newly-promoted Lecce, as Fernando Llorente grabbed a brace to continue his impressive form. The top of the table now has a very familiar look to it.

Fourth and fifth positions are now occupied by the Roman teams. Lazio had to make up for a poor European display and managed to push past a passive Parma, Ciro Immobile scored and also reacted badly to his substitution, but later apologised to his Coach. The Giallorossi left it late, as with 10 men they ended Bologna’s run of eight straight home wins, Edin Dzeko pouncing to take all three points in the 93rd minute. The teams from the Eternal City are certainly improving and Lazio against Inter will be the tie of the midweek round.

Elsewhere, late goals seemed to be in fashion as Atalanta left it until 95th minute to stun Fiorentina. The Viola had been 2-0 up thanks to an audacious goal from Franck Ribery, but La Dea confirmed their status as comeback kings. Despite what they thought was a last-gasp equaliser being disallowed via VAR, there was still time for a Timothy Castagne volley to add even more drama for 2-2.

Torino were bitterly disappointing again as they faced a floundering Sampdoria. Eusebio Di Francesco’s side were without a point until this game, but Manolo Gabbiadini’s goal got them off the mark. The win will do little to help the relationship between Massimo Ferrero and the fans, as the Sampdoria President arrived with a bodyguard to watch the game, but it should at least calm some of the EDF sack rumours for a few days.

Cagliari beat Genoa 3-1 in Sardinia in a game that saw three goals in the last seven minutes, so any good progress from the Grifone in the opening games seems to be dissipating quickly. Sassuolo hammered SPAL 3-0 with Francesco Caputo netting a brace, confirming the Neroverdi are in sporadic form, but there always seem to be goals. Finally, Udinese suffered their third consecutive defeat at the hands of Brescia. Defeats to potential relegation candidates will have many questioning the Zebrette’s ability to contest in Serie A this campaign and it’s looking like another anxious season.

Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £9.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit:

Have your say...
I seem to recall Mancini in 2015-16 won his first 5 games, including beating Milan, there was the same premature reaction from football italia. At least wait until there is clear daylight between the teams before making these calls, especially considering Inter's history.
on the 24th September, 2019 at 8:23pm
@Xander5 just because you believe it's great that pathetic editorials are being penned after 4 freakin' matches about who's gonna be the front-runner in the Scudetto race, doesn't mean everyone else should be like you. Some of us know for many years how pathetic such unwarranted comparisons are and how they're nothing but mental masturbation. You may like it, I don't. 
on the 24th September, 2019 at 6:10pm
as much of a gender confused/obsessed weirdo as Butch is, he is not nearly as bitter and annoying as you are on these pages
on the 24th September, 2019 at 3:32pm
My goodness Pinty, what a very sensitive person you are. To class Pinty and being called a sweet, albeit aggressive, pup as low blows staggers me. And then to call me a classless, clueless swine, mentally disabled person that needs to visit an asylum, just goes to highlight your hypocrisy, your lack of self-awareness and expertise at projection. Unlike you, I am pleased that you're not being censored: sunlight is the best disinfectant, and I'll gladly capture you in my potent sunbeams xxx.
on the 24th September, 2019 at 1:12pm
Hey while Milan's still dreaming of UCL, Roma just won the bonsai trophy by defeating the might Real Madrid ! *sigh
on the 24th September, 2019 at 12:28pm
Poor Butch, no friends, no life, so he resorts to name-calling and low-blows.

That's what happens to classless and cultureless swines. Not to mention, he talks about 4 types of people, he's the type of cancer manifest which is why there are gender-problems and snowflakes being given too much - just like his comments are being displayed here. A classic case of a mentally disabled person.

Are there no mental asylums in the ghetto you live? Try to get some help. Cheers.
on the 24th September, 2019 at 4:03am
And now on to to less pressing topics. The author is correct (don't let that beastly Pinty get you down), the league is taking shape and what a lovely shape it is. It's positively throbbing with an urge to delight us. Can anybody seriously make a case for any other team challenging Inter, Juventus or Napoli for the podium positions?? Throw me your mental gymnastics, but I do warn you, I am mentally supple.
on the 24th September, 2019 at 12:03am
I must admit that Pinturicchio is growing on me, entering my thoughts during vacant moments. He/she/ve/xe... reminds me of one of those aggressive little dogs that tries to couple with ones leg, or bite you softly and then roles around on their back for you. FI, please continue throwing 'Pinty' the high fibre biscuits. Feed the pup!! Thank you.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 11:55pm
@Romanista 4 Life

"a 6-feet-under team for the last 4 or 5 years."

What have actually Roma accomplished over the last 4 -5 years that's so great? Pipe down, you're on level with with Milan, which is sadly trash.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 9:56pm
@Milan Fan ... If I were you, I would consider to care about my team which plays like shit rather than bashing others teams out of frustration... "lol"
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 3:12pm
@ Jason....Napoli need another striker! What are you on? 13 goals in Serie A games already. How many did you expect them to score ...5 per game? This is Napoli's year. Inter will go well until Christmas then start dropping points. Juve are in financial trouble so cannnot pay the refs as much and with new refs that have not been bought yet as well as a new manager it has to be Ancellotti. Expect them to do well in CL too.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 3:05pm
I don't believe the league is anywhere close to taking shape as yet. Juventus will always be Juventus so they remain the favourites. Inter despite 4 wins haven't been convincing and it remains to be seen how they match up against sterner opposition as Milan were poor on Saturday. Not sure where Napoli will end up as I think they still need an additional striker, just as I believe Roma do.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 2:13pm
People sent messages that Milan should bring back Gattuso! To bring back Gattuso is not the issue. Not today, everybody knows that one, even Conti. MILAN have fantastic and world classic players in the bench our coach refuse to use all because he prefers to lose than to win. My advice is he should relegate all the players like Biglia, Suso, Kessie, Conti, Rodriguez, and start using the new signing players, then we should be expecting good results.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 1:27pm
Poor Article.

Richard Hall must be one of those annoying people - like Germans everywhere - who randomly bring up "Xmas and holiday season" out of nowhere in every possible conversation - and we're not even in October yet.

Talking about the "Scudetto race" and "Inter passed their first real test against Milan" reeks of rubbish journalism.

I'd have understood if 1/3rd of the season was done, or any of the teams had built up a steady and stable run. This isn't FM or PES/FIFA, get over it.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 12:07pm
The link to the season 2018/19 review:
seems to be missing on FI Serie A page.
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 11:42am
Inter in the Scudetto race ... lol
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 11:13am
Yes, Inter won their first 4 games in a row but the current Milan isn't their real test for Inter coz Milan's been a 6-feet-under team for the last 4 or 5 years.
And remember, Inter has the tendency of slipping down after mid-season, if Conte manages to rebuild Inter as a winning team against Juve, Napoli, Roma, Lazio & Atalanta then I have to say 95% scudetto is theirs.
May the best team win, forza Roma !
on the 23rd September, 2019 at 10:15am

Post new comment

Your email address is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
If you have your own website, enter its address here.
Maximum 500 characters.
This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
Enter the characters shown in the image.
Your responses will be moderated, and sometimes edited, by Football Italia before appearing on the site. Your data may be made public and you accept our Privacy Policy. Please keep your comments clean and try to keep them relevant to the blog above. We reserve the right to reject views that we deem unsuitable for publication.