For a long time now there has been a lot of talk about a rebuilding process at Inter. Taking out the older veteran players and bringing in fresh young talent who would bring success to Inter in the years to come. Also while doing this cutting down the mountain of wages Inter were paying out and bringing in players on lower wages but who were of equal quality and could bring success in the future. However we are still talking about that to this day and I’m now wondering is this process of rebuilding actually going to happen? After numerous poor mercato’s and ridiculous transfer dealings it is almost as if we are going backwards and not forwards.
Poor Transfer Dealing’s
Part of the problem is the poor transfer dealing’s of Inter in the last few years. One simple problem is that we let go of players of high quality and bring in average players who are simply not good enough to fill the void left by the previous player. Transfers such as Diego Forlan who was brought in to replace Samuel Eto’o who had just had a fantastic season Scoring 37 goals and contributing 15 assists in all competitions. On top of this fantastic record he was our most influential player that season and he dragged us through many games in which we were struggling. Then for some baffling reason we decide to sell him and bring in Diego Forlan who was coming towards the end of his career and his best years were passed him. Also when looking for a replacement we should have been looking for a younger replacement who could play for many years to come and was of similar quality. We can’t expect to compete at the top-level when we sell our best players and replace them with mediocrity.
10 MILLION FOR MAICON AND REAL ARE JUST A STEP AWAY
Moratti wants to cut salary: uncertain future for Julio Cesar and Sneijder. Castaignos towards West Ham.
First offer for Debucy to form new wings with Kolarov. Here is the 5 milion for the French but Lille want more.
Destro, Giovinco, and Silvestre: to be decided.
Milan – Things are on the move. The outgoing transfer market of Inter is about to take off. After having collected 8 million from the outright sale of Goran Pandev to Napoli, the Nerazzurri would increase their money coffer with Maicon and Castaignos. But in the plans of Moratti, Branca and Ausilio is the will to lower the mountain of salaries, with relative to the revolution of the team, would lead to other big departures. Some certain departures are that of Forlan and Lucio but also Julio Cesar, Pazzini and Sneijder, those that are with uncertain future.
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The Serie A week 33 match against Fiorentina at the Stadio Artemio Franchi was Inter’s first since the untimely death of Piermario Morosini last weekend and before kickoff both teams stood united in a minute silence to honour his memory.
This was really a must win match for Inter if they were to keep up the pressure on finishing in the last Champions League spot of third, and everything seemed to be in their favour as Fiorentina have had an even more disappointing season than that of Inter, finding themselves sitting on the edge of safety down the bottom of the table. Inter also were handed the advantage that the Viola were without key players like Amauri who was suspended and Stevan Jovetic who is injured, not only that for reasons unknown to me, Fiorentina coach Delio Rossi decided to have Riccardo Montolivo on the bench instead of on the pitch. This combined with the fact they were playing two teenage and fairly unexperienced center backs meant that Inter started the game with a huge advantage over the home side.
Just a week ago Stramaccioni was celebrating the Inter Primavera NexGen Series final win and now this week he’s in charge of the first team that has struggled for the last couple of months under the direction of Claudio Ranieri. Since the announcement by Massimo Moratti on Monday evening that the 36-year-old youth team coach was taking over as caretaker coach a new optimism has engulfed everyone associated with Inter.
With his humble but charismatic character he seems to have won over the changing room and with his background in charge of the Primavera squad there is a great expectation of him being the ideal person to phase out the older players in the squad and replace them with a selection of the most promising talents from both the first team and youth squads.
Inter’s week 29 2011/12 Serie A match away for the first time at the new Juventus stadium didn’t end as I was hoping it would. Even though I knew our chances in this match were slim at best, considering the difference in form this season between the Bianconeri and the Nerazzurri, I still held on to that faint glimmer of hope that Inter could be the first team this season to hand our old enemy a defeat.
Of course that was asking too much of Claudio Ranieri and our aged team and even though we didn’t manage to beat them we did put up a good fight and make them work hard for their win.
Ranieri opted for his 4-4-2 formation for the game with just two changes from the squad that flopped against Atalanta last week, bringing in Dejan Stankovic in place of Esteban Cambiasso and Diego Forlan partnering Diego Milito instead of Giampaolo Pazzini. New boy Fredy Guarin made another step towards his debut and was picked to sit on the bench as one of the back up brigade.
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After Inter’s superb win against Chievo last Friday evening and with Marseille losing yet again in their own league the stage was set for the Nerazzurri to turn around the 1-0 first leg defeat. The plan was to show the French side the strength and resolve that Inter has to turn around results like these in front of a packed Stadio Giuseppe Meazza, using the same lineup that produced a winning display in Verona Claudio Ranieri expected his squad to come out fighting and take the game to the visitors.
The reality though was that from the kickoff Marseille looked as though they weren’t happy to just defend their one goal aggregate lead and wanted the away goal to sure up their position ahead of Inter. Less than ten minutes in to the game it looked like Inter would level things off as captain Javier Zanetti took the ball in to the box cutting it back for Wesley Sneijder who just had to chip it in to a fairly open net but instead he hit it low straight in to the goalkeepers body much to the surprise of everyone watching the match.
What a great week it has been for me and all Interisti, starting with the 2-2 comeback last week against Catania where we started to see sparks of the Inter we all know and love, then in the midweek I was honoured and proud to see that both Bedy Moratti & Inter themselves had mentioned Nerazzurri World on Twitter. Then as we celebrated Inter’s 104th Birthday the Nerazzurri secured their first win since the Lazio game back on the 22nd January.
This game saw the return of both Dejan Stankovic and Maicon to the starting line up and Claudio Ranieri opted for another try with the 4-3-1-2 formation. the lineup was fairly unsurprising with him going with our strongest back four of Maicon, Lucio, Walter Samuel and Yuto Nagatomo. The three man midfield consisted of Javier Zanetti, Dejan Stankovic and Andrea Poli, personally I would’ve left Stankovic out and brought in Marco Davide Faraoni to play on the right with Zanetti in the center but I’m not Inter’s head coach so we have to respect Ranieri’s decisions. The attack was exactly as I would’ve chosen with Wesley Sneijder behind the partnership of the two Diegos Forlan and Milito, this set up works well in my opinion as Forlan can drop deeper and wider to create more chances for Milito unlike Giampaolo Pazzini who like I’ve said many times is too similar to ‘El Principe’ and is purely a box player.
The week 26 match against Catania at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza was being considered a last chance saloon for Claudio Ranieri and just to add more pressure to the Italian coach’s situation, earlier in the day the man most people are touting as his replacement, Andre Villas-Boas, was dismissed from Chelsea FC after an unconvincing season in the English Premier League.
Ranieri himself must have realised he really is close to losing his job as for this match he decided to return to his winning formula of the 4-4-2 formation, opting to put our under fire trequartista Wesley Sneijder on the bench instead of risking once again playing him behind the strikers. Also despite being called up to the initial squad, Claudio decided to play it safe and drop Maicon from the match squad completely as he is still feeling some discomfort in his knee that was injured in the Champions league match against Marseille.
This meant that Javier Zanetti and Yuto Nagatomo took up the full back positions either side of Lucio and Walter Samuel, this is all well and good apart from he started Zanetti as left back and Nagatomo in his weaker rightback position. This of course is from the coach that has publicly said in the past that he’s not convinced by Zanetti as left back?!? New boy Juan Jesus took a step towards making his debut but unfortunately spent the entire match on the bench, this was a disappointment to me as I’m looking forward to seeing what the Brazilian defender can do, and there were times during the match where a quicker defender would have been very useful for Inter.
With AC Milan’s 4-0 win over Arsenal last week and Napoli’s 3-1 win against Chelsea on Tuesday night the flag of Italian football was truly flying high, so it was up to Inter to finish the job against Marseille and make it three out of three for calcio. This though, in reality just added extra pressure for our under fire coach Claudio Ranieri to get the right result, with the rumour mill and the world’s media claiming a loss in France would signal the end of his Inter career.
Despite this immense pressure on his shoulders and with Massimo Moratti, his son Angelomario and his nephew Angelo in the stands behind him watching every move and decision, he started the team with the slightly risky 4-3-1-2 formation. His starting lineup consisted of Julio Cesar in goal. Maicon, Lucio and Walter Samuel as you’d expect in defence with Cristian Chivu surprisingly taking Yuto Nagatomo’s place at left back. There was another surprise in the three-man midfield as alongside the obvious selections of Javier Zanetti and Esteban Cambiasso, Ranieri started the Serbian veteran Dejan Stankovic?!? No I don’t understand it either considering he had the in form Andrea Poli on the bench. Ahead of these Wesley Sneijder sat in his usual trequartista role behind Mauro Zarate (Yes yet another surprise starter!) and Diego Forlan who was making his Champions league debut for Inter.
Coming in to this game against Bologna at the Giuseppe Meazza there was, despite recent form, a confidence that we could turn things around and gain a fairly easy three points. After all the Bolognese team aren’t having the best of seasons themselves and having not played a game for two weeks (their last two games were postponed due to bad weather) were likely to be a bit rusty, this was a must win the situation for Inter and all the odds were in their favor.
This wasn’t to be though as Claudio Ranieri yet again ‘tinkered’ with his tactics and this time fielded a 4-2-3-1 formation, which like last week’s 4-3-2-1 I am a big fan of. These tactics themselves aren’t the problem as in both games Inter held on to a vast majority of the possession throughout the 90 minutes, the problems on the pitch are coming from all the constant changes that Ranieri is making. He needs to stick with a formation, quickly find his optimal starting eleven and only make substitutions during the game when they are desperately needed not just when the whim takes him. These substitutions also need to show a lot more understanding of what’s happening on the pitch as he never seems to make the changes that are so obvious to the rest of us.