Former Juventus CEO Giuseppe Marotta Confirms Shock Move to Inter Is ‘Possible’

?Former Juventus CEO and General Manager Giuseppe Marotta has admitted that a surprise move to fierce rivals Inter could be on the cards. 

Marotta came to Turin from Sampdoria in 2010, following the Old Lady’s worst season in the Serie A since their infamous demotion off the back of the Calciopoli scandal. In the proceeding eight years at the club he oversaw a complete reversal in fortunes, with seven league titles accrued on the bounce as well as four Coppa Italia triumphs. 

SS Lazio v FC Juventus - TIM Supercup

However, just after convincing ?Cristiano Ronaldo to join I Bianconeri this summer, the 61-year-old terminated his contract with the club. In the interim, rumours of a switch to Arsenal and Manchester United have been mooted, but it seems the Italian will turn down both in favour of ?Juve’s fierce rivals – I Nerazzurri. 

Speaking after receiving the Radicchio d’Oro award for the best football chief in Italy, as quoted by ?Calciomercat, Marotta admitted: “I will remain in Italy and Inter is a possibility.”

As if stating his mission statement for his upcoming role with this season’s ‘anti-Juve’, he also added: “They have no competitors in Italy for their qualities and for their organisation.”


To be fair, he’s not wrong. Sunday’s 2-0 victory over ?AC Milan maintained the league leaders’ unbeaten record this campaign, improving on the greatest ever start to a ?Serie A season the country has ever seen. 

Unfortunately for ?Inter, the pressure of Juve’s perfection finally told, with their own domestic run coming to an end on Saturday with a 4-1 defeat to Atalanta. They are now in third, three points behind Napoli in second and nine points behind Massimo Allegri’s side.

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4 Football Clubs Who Should Definitely Try to Sign Inter Goal Machine Mauro Icardi

Mauro Icardi is one of the most lethal strikers in Europe at the moment and with ten goals in 13 appearances in all competitions this season.

The striker shared Serie A’s Capocannoniere title for the league’s top scorer last season (alongs with Lazio’s Ciro Immobile), having netted 29 times in the league, and could take the accolade for the third time before his 27th birthday if he carries on in the same form in 2018/19.

There are several top clubs crying out for an out-and-out number nine to lead the line, and with Icardi’s reported release clause set at a not particularly off-putting €110m, Inter may have a fight to keep their captain for much longer.

Here are five clubs that could certainly use Icardi’s goals…

4. Chelsea

Despite a recent mini-resurgence, the Stamford Bridge jury is still out on Álvaro Morata. 

The Spaniard has five Premier League goals to his name in 2018/19, but has often flattered to deceive and rarely looked like the dominant, reliable centre forward Chelsea have needed since the exit of Diego Costa.

With Michy Batshuayi farmed out on loan and Olivier Giroud a peripheral figure, Chelsea are in need of an instinctive striker like Icardi, who makes the right runs into the area and knows where the goal is. 

His movement causes defenders problems, which was evident against AC Milan in the recent Derby della Madonnina, and he is a deadly finisher, who can score all kinds of goals – just ask Tottenham!

Maurizio Sarri has been linked with a litany of forward options from Callum Wilson to Krzysztof Pi?tek, but surely none represent the sure-fire quality of Icardi.

3. Real Madrid

It has been difficult for Real Madrid without Cristiano Ronaldo up front and his absence has been visible. 

Ronaldo wasn’t just a goalscorer, he was instrumental to the manner in which the Real Madrid played, getting the ball out wide, linking-up with his creative teammates in Isco and Luka Modri? and making the darting runs, from which he scored many.

The side haven’t found a suitable replacement to score the goals, with Karim Benzema, Gareth Bale and returning striker Mariano Diaz all failing to fill the void. 

Icardi would be the ideal candidate to try and fill the void at Madrid. He is a target man and selfish poacher like Ronaldo, who would thrive off the service from Madrid’s playmakers. 

2. Manchester United

Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho’s faith in number nine Romelu Lukaku seems to be wavering. 

The Belgian has failed to turn up in the big games for United, with his only goal against last season’s top-five, coming against former side Chelsea back in February.

Without a goal since September, Lukaku has just four goals in 14 appearances in all competitions this season. 

On his day, Lukaku can be one of the most deadly strikers in the world. He demonstrated his ability for Belgium in the World Cup, but his performances in a United shirt, differ widely to his displays for the Belgians. Despite having the aerial power and presence to keep possession and link-up with teammates, he hasn’t got a great first touch, causing many opportunities to be rushed and usually squandered.

Icardi could be a vast improvement, considering his ability to control the ball well, which allows him enough time to pick a corner and find the net. The Argentine’s timing of his runs is also an aspect that would certainly improve this United side.

1. Atlético Madrid

Atlético Madrid are a side struggling to find goals in the league this season. The Rojiblancos have just 16 goals in 12 league matches and despite losing just once in La Liga, they have drawn five matches, demonstrating a lack of cutting-edge and a failure to kill off games.

One would think that with Antoine Griezmann and Diego Costa, Los Colchoneros would be firing on all cylinders, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Griezmann has struggled for goals since his World Cup win, while Costa is yet to score in La Liga in nine outings. 

The former Chelsea striker has been linked with a move away in January, with the Chinese Super League a potential destination.

Griezmann and Costa are two versatile strikers. The Frenchman is agile and skillful with a wand of a left foot, while the Spaniard is a powerful player, who bullies defenders. However, Icardi is very much a combination of the two. He knows how to get the better of defenders and tussle with his more physical opponents to keep hold of the ball. He possesses good trickery to create a yard of space and utilises his pace to make darting runs.

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Samir Handanovic Claims Inter Need to ‘Rethink Objectives’ After Hammering By Atalanta

??Inter goalkeeper Samir Handanovic has admitted the Nerazzurri were well beaten and deserved to lose to Atalanta following their 4-1 hammering on Sunday. 

The shot stopper has also surprisingly called on the whole group to rethink their objectives for the season, claiming this defeat showed they ‘are not ready’ to meet expectations.

Atalanta BC v FC Internazionale - Serie A

Speaking to Inter TV via Italian news outlet Calcio Mercato, the Slovenian said: “They played better than us and they deserved to win.

“We have to start all over again after the international break. This defeat may be good for us, we have to think about what we did and take a step back all together.”?

Inter fell behind after just eight minutes on Sunday following a Hans Hataboer goal, and despite drawing level two minutes into the second half through talisman Mauro Icardi, the Nerazzurri went on to concede three more goals in what was a dire away performance.

Handanovic was clearly speaking emotionally after the match and admitted that people need to rethink their expectations of Inter following their positive start to the season. 

“I think we are not ready for some objectives people were talking about and the Atalanta game confirms it.” 

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Following Sunday’s defeat, Inter still sit third in the table – four points above arch rivals AC Milan. However, the gap to Juventus at the top has opened up to nine points after just 12 games. Next up for Inter following the international break is a home fixture against Frosinone.

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Luciano Spalletti Slams Inter Mentality After 4-1 Humbling Away to Atalanta

?Luciano Spalletti was refreshingly blunt in his post-match comments following his team’s 4-1 defeat to Atalanta at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia. 

The Nerazzurri entered the game on a seven game winning run in the league and fresh off a 1-1 draw with Barcelona in the Champions League, but were blown away in the second half of a thrilling game in Bergamo. 

Atalanta BC v FC Internazionale - Serie A

Spalletti, quoted by ?Football Italia, told DAZN following the game: “Unfortunately, we seem incapable of maintaining concentration for long periods.

“That means we give our opponents extra space and our lapses in focus. We take it too easily and when we’re up against a side that is this determined and well-organised, it all becomes more difficult.”

Despite being pummelled in the first half, a ?Mauro Icardi penalty early in the second period levelled the match and gave Inter a lifeline – but only for 15 minutes, before Gianluca Mancini put Atalanta back ahead. 

Inter entered the game with the league’s tightest defence, but fell apart under pressure on Sunday. Spalletti added: “The game was going in the direction we wanted after the equaliser, the direction we had hoped for from the start, but we lost too many individual duels and our positioning was all wrong.

Atalanta BC v FC Internazionale - Serie A

“Atalanta maintained a consistent approach from the start, but we pushed up through the middle and for a while either side could’ve won. Then we had another dip in concentration and Atalanta took advantage on set plays.”

?Inter now prepare to face Frosinone next weekend before facing rivals Roma and ?Juventus next in ?Serie A.

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Atalanta 4-1 Inter: Report, Ratings & Reaction as I Nerazzurri Are Embarrassed Away From Home

Inter fell at the hands of Atalanta at the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia, as their seven-game winning streak in Serie A came to an emphatic end.

Luciano Spalletti will surely be beyond angry as his team failed to apply any pressure to Juventus in the late kick-off and they now sit behind Napoli in third place.

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I Nerazzurri failed to even get going on Sunday and were more than deserving of their 4-1 drumming. Atalanta controlled play in the first half and would have been disappointed if anything to not have the game buried. 

Mauro ?Ica?rdi appeared to have made them pay at the start of the second half as he fired home a penalty after a dubious handball was given against Gianluca Mancini just a minute into resuming play. 

However it was the defender who responded well with a goal soon after and his fellow defender Berat Djimsiti scored a carbon-copy goal in the 88th minute. Alejandro Gomez put the icing on the cake for the home side with a late wonder strike at the end of added time.

To make matters worse, Marcelo Brozovic was sent off for a late challenge after already receiving a yellow card. That rules the Croatian midfielder out for Inter’s next game against Frosinone next weekend.


Inter

Key Talking Point

?Inter never got out of the starting blocks on Sunday. Just three minutes in, Samir Handanovic was forced into a fantastic double save but this set the tone for the rest of the afternoon. Just as Inter were hopeful they could survive the early onslaught, Hans Hateboer appeared at the back post unmarked to give Atalanta a much deserved lead after just eight minutes.


It was Robin Gosens who found himself in so much space on the left and was able to steer the ball between goalkeeper and defence to find Hateboer in acres of space. This should have served as a warning to the visitors but this sequence would play out time and time again. Kwadwo Asamoah never seemed to be in the vicinity when Josip Ilicic missed not one but two good chances at the back post. Inter’s inability to recover from the early goal was probably what cost them.  


Player Ratings

Starting XI: Handanovic (8); D’Ambrosio (4). Skriniar (4), Miranda (5), Asamoah (3); Vecino (4), Brozovic (3), Gagliardini (4); Politano (5), Icardi (5), Perisic (4)

Substitutes: Valero (6), Vrsalijko (5)


Star Player – Samir Handanovic

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The Slovenian goalkeeper and long-standing Inter stalwart was the only player from the visitors who could leave the field with his head held high. Handanovic was phenomenal. He was as good as his defence was bad. He was offered no help and he was the only reason the goal margin was kept at just three. He made five saves which all seemed to be more spectacular than the last. 


Worst Player –  The Entire Inter Defence.

It’s hard to pinpoint just one player who was poor for Inter, but as a unit the defence was abject. They were never positionally set and their back line was always far too deep affording Atalanta’s play-makers far too much space. 

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The full-backs were particularly appalling. Asamoah and Danilo D’Ambrosio seemed to be caught too far up the pitch time and time again. You would think this may at least give Inter some attacking threat but they never seemed to string enough passes together to utilise any width. 


Atalanta

Key Talking Point

Atalanta dominated the first half. They had more possession and prevented Inter from getting a single shot on target. It is no exaggeration to say Atalanta should have been 5-0 up at half-time. This was all flipped drastically just thirty seconds into the second half when the penalty was awarded, as not only did Inter equalise but they stole the momentum. Just when you thought Inter could rescue the three points, Mancini rose highest from a free-kick and restored Atalanta’s lead in the 63rd minute.

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It was the defender who gave the penalty away but it was him who responded as well. This marks the third consecutive game Mancini has scored in and, more importantly than keeping alive that streak, it put the home team on top and they were able to see the game out from that point onwards. 


Player Ratings

Starting XI: Berisha (5); Toloi (6), Djimisiti (7), Mancini (7); Hateboer (8), De Roon (7), Frueler (7), Gosens (8); Ilicic (8), Gomez (9), Zapata (7)

Substitutes: Castagna (5), Pasalic (6)


Star Player – Alejandro Gomez

The Argentine was once again integral to everything positive for Atalanta. The 30-year-old attacking midfielder was especially dominant in the first half, occupying the space vacated by Marcelo Brozovic. His strike at the end of the game was an example of what he is capable of, and his performance could have easily seen him getting few more goals and assists to his name if his teammates around him showed better quality.


Worst Player – Etrit Berisha

The Albanian international goalkeeper kept his place in the team following Atalanta’s win over Bologna last weekend, however this was far from one of his better performances. Despite being hardly troubled, Berisha made his teammates nervous as he was clearly struggling with the surface. It was his sliced kick at the start of the second half which gave possession away in his own area which led to Inter’s penalty. 

Atalanta BC v FC Internazionale - Serie A


Looking Ahead

Inter play Frosinone at the San Siro next weekend. Their opponents currently sit in the relegation zone and should not provide much resistance. However Inter will then have to prepare to travel to face Roma and ?Juventus in a stretch of games which could give an indication of where their season is going this year.

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