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Pure Speculation on What Mazzarri's Internazionale Will Look Like

Finances and the possible club sale have dominated the Inter landscape lately, with good reason, but I would like to see if I can speculate on what the Inter of 2013-2014 will look like.



There has been rampant speculation on the possible sale of Handanovic to Barcelona in the past month. That noise has died down significantly as from the Inter side of things Handanovic has been labeled as either untouchable or a €30 million investment. From the Barcelona side of things, other names have quickly come to the fore including De Gea and Valdes claiming that he’ll be around for another year.

I have been on record stating that I think any transfer that includes Handanovic for the 2013-2014 season is a completely moronic move and I am very pleased to see that I agree with the club on this matter.

But there is more to my statement than meets the eye and that “more” is named Bardi. There is every chance that Bardi goes to a Serie A team this season on loan. I don’t know how the team thinks regarding this young man but I am of the opinion that he might be going places. He spent the last season on loan to Novara in Serie B, but the way they speak of him there is how Livorno speaks of Duncan – they want him to come back, they want him bad. The rumor is that there is a chance that Inter want to see how he’ll handle the step up.

Handanovic will definitely, in my reality anyway, be the goalkeeper for this team next season. But I will be keeping Bardi in the corner of my eye, assuming he’s in Serie A.


There are those that I have read that suggest that Juan doesn’t inspire and I am just not one of those people. The level of play and the amount of playing time the young man received was such a jump up in style and difficulty that I can only admire his ability to do as well as he did. That’s not to say that his game was perfect. He definitely fell off the truck at the end of the season. But that’s the kind of thing you sign up for when you play younger guys. I see him coming back and impressing again next season as a major contributor for Mazzarri, although I don’t think that he’ll get as much game time as he got last season.

Likewise Ranocchia. Everything I said about Juan, I can say about Andrea. This is the most playing time he’s ever had. This is the highest level of expectation he’s ever played at. He’s never been at the level of leadership he’s at now ever in his career. Once again, I think that this returning young man will see major time. And likewise Handanovic, I think that any transfer talk regarding him going to another Serie A team is complete idiocy. Any transfer talk regarding him going to England is pretty humorous. I don’t think they would know what to do with him. They would take one look at him and say, “Too slow” like they did with Materazzi. Never mind that he was fast enough to win a World Cup as a part of a record breaking defense and be joint high scorer for the team…

There is talk of Mazzarri wanting Samuel back. And I can agree with this. Samuel back on a rotation basis, that is. I thought Walter started out the season slow, hit his stride, ran out of gas about halfway and then got hurt. If we don’t try to rely on him as much as we did last season, I think he – and we – will be fine.

Chivu has one more year left on his reduced wage contract from a year ago. I have no problem with his returning as long as he doesn’t actually make the lineup as more than an emergency player. He has about 2 or 3 decent games in his system per year at this point.

I expect Compangnaro to take the place of Samuel from last season and I expect that Andreolli will probably split time with Juan at some point. Andreolli doesn’t have Juan’s physical gifts, but he’s an extremely solid player from the neck up if my impression of him is correct from the last 2 seasons at Chievo.


Assuming that there are no transfers into or out of the club as the takeover/minority shares negotiations continue, I expect the middle three of the 352 to be Mudingaye, Kovacic and Kuzmanovic. I can see two big guys with decent feet staying back by the defense and Kovacic given basically a free hand to roam all over the place.

I am hoping like all get out that Obi, yeah that guy, can come back and make a place for himself on the team as one of those middle 3. Cambiasso would be in the mix, but I would desperately like to see him take a step back. He’s another one like Samuel who ran out of gas by December.

I have seen rumors that have Deki retiring this season, so I am going to assume that he’s out of the mix. I have a slim hope that Mazzarri keeps Benassi on as a reserve. I don’t think that Gargano stays on for next season since I understand that it was Mazzarri who opted to push him out of Napoli. But assuming that he’s on the team, I hope, I hope, I hope that he comes off the bench. Like way off the bench.

Depending on how many players Mazzarri plays behind the forwards, I think that Guarin will be there. Not as a typical trequartista, distributing the ball, but as a moving midfielder who will makes runs up the field to come into the box late or put pressure on the other team’s technical midfielders. Having said that, I do think that Alvarez, assuming no sales remember, would be much more of a prototypical trequartista. And despite what people think of his athleticism, I wouldn’t be too shocked to see him running into the box late to do some damage.


This one is easy. If healthy, it’s the Nagatomo and Pereira show as I fully expect both players to come back next season. I also expect both to be much better prepared to work the defensive side of the job as well with Mazzarri calling the shots. Jonathan and Schelotto are the obvious backups at this point, assuming there are no inputs. Both of these gents are more right footed than left, I would say. If Zanetti were to come back from his injury and would be able to hobble through one more season – I don’t know why he would put himself through that, but saying he could/did – then he would be a shoo in for left sided wingback reserve, in my opinion.

Having said all that, and already assumed for the purposes of this exercise that the transfer market is frozen, this is the area I have the most concern for. I also think it’s the thinnest manned.


Depending on how many attackers Mazzarri chooses to use on any given game day, I expect Cassano to be in the line up, either next to or slightly behind the striker. That striker will likely be Milito. Or Icardi if we haven’t been lied to all this time and he makes it to Inter. I would love it if we could put someone out there besides Milito every so often. In this type of set up I think that Palacio coming off the bench or alternating games with Cassano would be a beautiful thing - I love his energy when he’s fresh. I have no idea what Mazzarri’s plans are for Longo but I can only hope that he gets a run out from time to time as either a support forward or as the main guy.

Am I crazy to even consider any of this? Got any better ideas?