Inter are on course to win their first Serie A title since 2010 after they beat Atalanta on Monday evening to keep the gap between themselves and Milan at 6 points.
Attention was drawn to this game as it was thought to be a tricky one for the league leaders even if they were at home. Atalanta have been impressive in the league for the past 18 months and that form got the club into the Champions League. The game ended just 1-0 to Antonio Conte’s team who had to fight for all three points, but what a huge win it was for the club in the end. Inter are used to sticking 3 goals or more past their opponents but on this occasion they would have been more than happy to get a single goal, collect the points and move on to the next game.
For Inter this victory would be the clubs 8th win in a row and it would be hard fought. The goal eventually arrived 10 minutes into the second half and it was through the most unlikeliest of players in defender Milan Skriniar who pounced on a loose ball in the area to slot home. If not for that this game could have ended 0-0 and that would have been a huge 2 points dropped at home considering that both Milan and Juventus claimed wins at the weekend.
Atalanta had chances to equalise late on and the game was summed up by the fact that Inter’s goal was the only strike on target they had the whole game that is how close and nervous this 90 minutes had been for them. Both Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez were kept quiet by a well organised back four for Atalanta.
For Atalanta they remain in 5th place as they try and chase down a Champions League qualification position. The good news for them is that they are just a point shy of that target with Roma in 4th on 50 points and themselves currently on 49.
Inter have 62 points while Milan have 56 in 2nd and Juventus are in 3rd place with 52 though the champions have a game in hand and could go to 55. The ball is still in Inter’s courts but at this time it remains uncertain if they can pull off what would be a fantastic league title.
Coach Conte had this to say about the game.” Let’s not forget we have the best attack and tonight we played against the second best attack. Beyond the defensive solidity, the right balance has been found. Today, the players recognise the different phases of the game, there are moments in which we choose which type of area to wait and then attack, while then we decide to push higher and change our attitude. We were good at finding the right mix. At the beginning we always went forward, a bit like what Atalanta always does.”
Inter’s next game is away to Torino on Sunday. Milan are at home to Napoli and Juventus will play Cagliari away from home.
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