I was really surprised today.
Not because Inter Milan won. I really wanted us to win that one, expected it, even. It was crucial to do so, to be able to keep up with Juventus (who, unsurprisingly, won on Sunday behind a Cristiano Ronaldo brace), and snatch the second spot in the standings from Napoli who drew with AS Roma. Even though beating Lazio in Rome with a red-hot Ciro Immobile is no joke, I believed we could win.
I sure didn’t expect the Nerazzurri to look this good, or to win in such a dominant fashion.
I didn’t watch the whole game: I left it before the first goal by Mauro Icardi, having to go out. On my way to my destination, I kept thinking about the game, but I never checked the score. An hour later, I decide to lazily Google ‘Inter Milan’, and now I’m staring at my phone incredulously, wide-eyed as a grin starts to take shape on my face.
I tell ya, winning feels good.
Heading into the season, I was really enthusiastic about the squad, our championship hopes, new signings, Mauro Icardi staying with the club, and a whole lot of other storylines. But, I have to say, I had concerns when we fell 0-1 to the European giants Sassuolo in the opening game, and immediately followed it by another dud, drawing with Torino at the Giuseppe Meazza 2-2. Even the win against Bologna didn’t convince me much, and that awful loss against Parma really had me worried. It started to feel like the team was headed down the old paths: Same old Inter, always the underachievers, the has-been’s. I was getting ready to fall under the pile of Europa League jokes, and choking memes. But then that streak happened.
And now we have our sixth consecutive Serie A win, stockpiling the points and the stats. So far, Inter ranks in the Top 10, in these categories in the league, according to WhoScored.com: Goals (16, 8th position), Shots per game (16.2, 5th), possession (55.7 percent, 2nd), passing accuracy (85.7 percent, 6th), shots conceded (12.3, 6th). The football has been softer on the eye-test, too: Inter is no longer fruitlessly dominating possession, Icardi is back in form, and dudes are stepping up. Obviously not everything is fine, as we’re ranked 13th in tackles, and an awful 19th in interceptions. Also, the Nerazzurri still have the bad tendency to surrender the momentum of the game when under pressure, and I’m still concerned about the lack of another capable goalscorer in the starting XI beside Icardi. But overall, it’s been a fine period.
We’re used to great starts that don’t end all that well: Last year’s squad raked 16 unbeaten games to start the season but fell harshly back to reality soon after, and just got through to the Champions League spot at the end of the season. Let’s hope for better results this year, and better football. And looking at the way Inter Milan is playing now, everything seems possible.
What do you think? Post your comments below!