Well. Is your glass half-full or half-empty after that? Personally I haven't decided yet, so I'm just going to state the facts: Inter have today become the first team (out of four) not to lose away to Sampdoria this season, and have - at least temporarily - moved back to the top of the Serie A table after seven games. The 1-1 draw at the Marassi leaves us on 16 points from a possible 21, with Juventus awaiting after the next international break.
The good? Sampdoria are a team in very good form (at home, at least), who caused us endless problems on the counter-attack in the first half with their terrifying trio of attackers, and will probably feel they should have won this game. If Joaquin Correa hadn't failed to pick out an open goal from three yards out before half-time, then they surely would have. This is a game which could easily have got away from us, a game we could have been several goals down in before we really got going. However, when we did get going (after Mancini made his changes, to his credit) we created quite a few decent chances and could have sneaked the win. Today is also the first time we've recovered points after going behind, which suggests our attack might be improving in front of packed defences.
The bad? Well, despite what I just said, for the best part of an hour we created extremely little. Without Stevan Jovetic we are decidedly one-paced, which is a concern. Mauro Icardi, up until his gorgeous assist for Perisic's goal, hardly saw the ball. We also conceded a lot, with a lot of cheap concessions of the ball which set Samp away on the break. Correa's miss really was astonishing, and who knows what would have happened then. We've also lost two points to everybody else, who will now smell blood and start closing us down.
The bittersweet thing about today's game is thus: we created a lot more than we had in the previous six matches, but we also conceded a lot more than we had in the previous six matches. Are those two things linked? Maybe so.
Our best player of the day? Perisic. He was useful solely in a defensive sense during the first-half, when he was once again played in the trequartista position that doesn't suit him, but once he was moved out to the wing his productivity shot through the roof. The first goal should give him confidence.
And now we stop for two weeks, before Juve roll into town for the Derby d'Italia. See you then.