In this blog we have discussed all sorts of problems Inter have. And there are many. I would have liked to point out, just for a change, the few good things: like Milito's thunderous shot or Forlan's improved condition. But in the end it seems I would be wasting my time. Useless. It’s far more useful to single out Inter's main problem which is the lack of direction, on and off the pitch.
Let's begin with the playing side. Starting with 4-4-2 with Nagatomo on the right, Zanetti on the left (they can adapt and play both sides, but Zanetti's favourite is right, and Nagatomo's left), in the heart of midfield, two holding midfielders as Cambiasso and Palombo, with Faraoni on the right and Forlan on the left; Pazzini and Milito upfront. These are the choices of a coach who's losing the plot. Simple as that.
In trying to recapture the magic formula of the winning streak, Ranieri forgot the basics: who's gonna feed the forwards? And for a team who spent nearly ten hours without scoring it should have been his first worry.
The introduction of Wesley Sneijder in the second half had more to do with desperation than with strategy or belief. Unfortunately, I fear the same could be said of the double change Poli-Obi for Cambiasso-Palombo. Ranieri probably rates the two pairings as fungible but they are not. Cambiasso and Palombo are too similar to complement each other: they double each other strengths and limitations. Whereas Poli and Obi is a combination that needed to be tried long time before now.
Poli has the skills and the potential to be a good playmaker - not Xavi, not Pirlo but a good dynamic playmaker. As regards to Obi, as I wrote it several times here, I see him as a new Edgar Davids, and like the former Dutch midfielder his best position is in the middle - providing bullets for the artillery. Poli and Obi did well but not enough to turn the much around. Carrizo and Forlan did. But that pair in midfield was the only brick for Inter to build on for the future.
Off the pitch. Another day... / To be continued
Serie A 2011-12 - Day 26
INTER: Julio Cesar; Nagatomo, Lucio, Samuel, Zanetti; Faraoni (46' Sneijder), Palombo (61' Obi), Cambiasso (61' Poli), Forlan; Milito, Pazzini. Coach: Ranieri
CATANIA: Carrizo; Motta, Legrottaglie, Spolli, Marchese; Izco, Lodi, Almiron; Gomez (87'Llama), Bergessio (69' Ebagua), Barrientos (32' Seymour). Coach: Montella
Goals: Gomez 20’, Izco 38’; Forlan 71', Milito 80'
Yellow cards: Izco; Sneijder