Napoli vs Inter Milan: Three key players to look out for

Sunday’s Serie A action features five games, with the action already underway. The proceedings will draw to a close with the marquee fixture of the latest round of fixtures, as Napoli and Inter Milan clash at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium.

Napoli’s defence of the Serie A title has not gone as well as they would have liked. The Partenopei cruised to winning the Scudetto after several decades. But Luciano Spalletti’s departure has hit them hard, with Rudi Garcia not lasting long in the hot seat. Walter Mazzarri took charge last month, but the performances have not improved much.

On the other hand, Inter Milan had been among the closest challengers for the Serie A title in the last two seasons. And they have come leaps and bounds under the tutelage of Simone Inzaghi, whose methods have gone through to the players. But the Nerazzurri will face stiff competition from Juventus, who climbed to the top of the table with the win over AC Monza on Friday.

Despite Napoli’s sub-par performances, Inter Milan cannot take the reigning Serie A champions lightly. But as is often the case in big games, individual brilliance will make a big impact on the proceedings. With that in mind, The Hard Tackle lists three players who can singlehandedly influence Sunday’s game.

Victor Osimhen

Our list will initially have an offensive look, with the two star strikers getting things underway. First up is the Napoli talisman, and Victor Osimhen’s performance will hold the key for the home side against Inter Milan.

The Nigerian international has endured a tumultuous campaign thus far after some distasteful posts by Napoli’s TikTok account. That led to speculation surrounding his future, with high-profile clubs like Real Madrid, Arsenal, Chelsea, and Liverpool showing interest in him.

But recent comments by Aurelio De Laurentiis suggest Osimhen is going nowhere, with a contract renewal on the cards. Meanwhile, the 24-year-old remains focused on the job at hand and will look to bolster his scoring tally, which has not been impressive this term.

The reigning champions need Osimhen at his best to have a chance to grab all three points. If last season’s MVP is anywhere near his top levels, Walter Mazzarri will be a happy camper this weekend.

Lautaro Martinez

The theme of the strikers continues, and the second pick on our list is also the Inter Milan captain. We are talking about Lautaro Martinez, who has been exceptional thus far in the 2023/24 season.

The Argentine international has never performed at the level he has thus far this season. He was also disappointing at the 2022 FIFA World Cup, with Julian Alvarez usurping him midway through the campaign. But he has taken his game up several notches in the 2023/24 campaign.

The 26-year-old is the top scorer in Serie A this season and is running away with the race to win the Golden Boot. Martinez has led Inter Milan’s Scudetto charge with aplomb, often singlehandedly delivering the goods in the final third.

The World Cup winner has 13 goals thus far this season in 13 Serie A appearances. The next best in the race is six strikes behind Martinez. So, considering he is going at the rate of a goal per game, the Inter Milan captain will fancy his chances of making his mark on the proceedings against Napoli and earning Simone Inzaghi the three points he desires.

Stanislav Lobotka

Our list ends with a defensive-minded pick, with this player hailing from Napoli. With Inter Milan being the favourite to take the maximum quota from the game, we have gone ahead with Stanislav Lobotka as our last pick.

The Slovakian international was a colossus in the middle of the park as Napoli won the Serie A title. But he has blown hot and cold in the ongoing campaign, which has impacted the defending champions during the defensive phases.

However, Napoli will be in good stead if the 29-year-old is in his element against Inter Milan on Sunday. Lobotka will look to keep things tight in the middle of the park and keep Inter Milan’s creative players quiet. That will be crucial for Walter Mazzarri and his charges to retain the maximum quota of points from this weekend’s game.

Source: The Hardtackle

Post navigation

Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Translate »