This game was influenced by Benalouane's ejection after 52 minutes, so the analysis won't be as accurate and useful as it should, but it will be interesting seeing how the team reacted to the one man advantage and how they changed their style of play without Icardi on the field.
Attacking through the middle
Icardi's absence leaved Inter without an imposing figure in the offense (Palacio, Podolski and Shaqiri are not exactly big persons) so Mancini's squad developed their game through the central areas of the field and most of their goals came that way. 35% of Inter's maneuvers were made in the middle and obviously the numbers of crosses made decreased from the previous game: 31 against Palermo last week and 22 against Atalanta on Sunday.
Ridiculously good defense
Obviously, playing against a 10-men team is a lot easier, but when you end the game with 21 successful tackles out of 25 attempts (84%) it's safe to say that everything went in the right direction defensively, not only in that game, but in the previous ones too: Inter allowed only 1 goal in the last 2 games while they were averaging 1.38 goals against in the previous 21. Small sample size so far, but they are encouraging numbers nonetheless.
Inter is playing a much more possession oriented type of football and it's not unusual seeing them keeping the ball more than the opponents and having a lot more passes too. However against Atalanta they were almost perfect, completing 599 passes out of the 681 attempted, with a success rate of 88%, that is the same Barcelona have this season in La Liga. After Benalouane's sending off Inter raised their accuracy to the 94%, completing 365 out of 388passes. I am not here to say that our team is as good as their, but one thing sure is that Mancini has worked well with the players on that type of game and as long as they will continue playing like that, Inter could aim to be one of the most exciting teams to watch, like Barcelona is. Santon was almost perfect Sunday completing 73 out of 77 of his attempting passes (95%), even if only 28 of them were forward passes it's still an impressive number by a player that joined the team just two weeks ago.
Guarin was an absolute beast
The Colombian has struggled playing good games with continuity since his arrival at Inter two years ago, but under Mancini's guidance it seems he found new life and the much needed confidence to play at the expected levels. Against Atalanta he scored his first double in the Serie A and earned a crucial penalty kick in the first minute of the game. He also was extremely accurate with his passing, completing the 82% of his attempted passes.
Thanks to fourfourtwo.com for the stats.