Three league wins in a row has put Inter in 2nd place on 21 points and they are 5 points behind city rivals Milan.
Inter’s latest win came at home against Bologna when they won 3-1. Romelu Lukaku who is in the best form of his career opened the scoring but the plaudits wouldn’t go to him, neither would they go to the delightful talents of Lautaro Martinez. No there was a new hero for a new weekend and that belonged to Achraf Hakimi. The 22 year old scored 2 goals to confirm a great win for Antonio Conte’s side.
Lukaku scored his 8th goal of the league season and he saved his blushes at the same time. A cross was met by the swinging leg of the Belgian and the would be goal could have been a great one but Lukaku scuffed the shot, but got the luck of a second chance and made no mistake to put Inter 1-0 up,
Inter were soon 2-0 up and cruising after a delightful pass right through the middle by Marcelo Brozovic found Hakimi who still had a quite a bit to do on the edge of the area and made no mistakes in firing home, it was a beautifully worked goal between two players who made it look rather simple.
The first half ended 2-0 but in the second Bologna gave Inter food for thought by pulling a goal back through Emanuel Vignato. It was plain and simple bad defending which led to the goal and it could have been converted a couple of times in mad cap defending and the ball rebounding until it fell to Vignato who was never going to make any mistakes from such short range out. All of a sudden with twenty minutes remaining it was game on.
However just three minutes later Hakimi scored a superb solo goal running from just inside Bologna’s half, he had quite a bit of space and only needed to fend off one player but he kept running and had his shot which flew into the net. That killed the game off and any faint hope that Bologna had.
Antonio Conte was happy with his side who had 9 shots on target and are a point clear of Juventus, he said: “The lads are beginning to learn, if we don’t keep maximum concentration, we run risks and concede avoidable goals. Unlike other countries, in Italy we play a very tactical football. We therefore alternate periods of high press with waiting and then being aggressive on the ball.”
There was also praise for Hakimi, the man of the match. “This lad is 20 years old and had just two seasons at Dortmund, where they play a much less tactical style of football. Haki is working hard, he has realised the difference between playing in Italy and Germany, where the opponents don’t study you as much, where they don’t identify your characteristics as precisely. I think he is in the right team and with the right coach to become one of the best in the world in his role. It will require a lot of work, but I’m very happy, because this type of performance will boost his confidence, whereas errors in the past might’ve dented his self-belief. He needs a balance, it’s going to be a process.”
Inter will be the favourites to win their next league game when they take on Cagliari away from home. Milan will play Parma at San Siro.
Inter need a win for them and Real Madrid
Even though Inter are in 4th place in their Champions League group, they can still incredibly qualify for the knock out stages but they will need to beat Shakhtar Donetsk. They are at home and many people will feel they have no excuses not to get the job done. At the same time Real Madrid who have not been on form will need to beat Borussia Monchengladbach for Inter to have a chance to qualify. The good news is that Real cannot relax and will need a win to make certain of progression, so it is all up for grabs.
Best Inter players in the fantasy rankings
The player that scored the most points over the weekend was of course Achraf Hakimi. It would have been more but the defender was also booked. He has 18 points overall and is the third best ranked player. Romelu Lukaku leads the rankings with a total of 35 points and is followed by Martinez with 20.
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