Antonio Conte has pulled off a sensational achievement at Inter by winning Serie A without the league’s strongest team, according to one former Nerazzurri defender.
Inter were confirmed as champions on Sunday, ending an 11-year wait for the scudetto, after they beat Crotone and Atalanta failed to win away at Sassuolo.
Daniele Adani believes Conte’s iron-clad relationship with Romelu Lukaku – who last night said he’d die for Conte if necessary – was the key to Inter’s title triumph.
“Conte and Lukaku’s connection was pivotal for Inter winning the scudetto,” Adani argued while appearing on Christian Vieri’s Twitch channel, Bobo TV.
“Conte didn’t have the strongest team but he’s evolved players like Nicolo Barella and Alessandro Bastoni, who are good enough to play for Italy now thanks to him.
“He managed to instill an idea in his players but that idea wouldn’t have worked without Lukaku, the spiritual leader of this Inter team.
“The Belgian is responsible for several parts of Inter’s game which have made the difference this season.”
Christian Eriksen scored Inter’s opening goal on Saturday as they won 2-0 at the Stadio Ezio Scida, continuing his remarkable upturn in form since the end of January.
Adani has never made any secret of his love for the Danish midfielder and again reiterated Eriksen’s importance to Inter, adding: “The key moment of Inter’s season was Valentine’s Day, when Conte started Eriksen against Lazio.
“It wasn’t an experiment on this occasion, it was because Conte believed in him, and in that game he formed the left-hand trio of Bastoni, Eriksen and Ivan Perisic.
“Eriksen has become decisive by adapting his game and it’s no coincidence he scored the goal which secured the scudetto on Saturday.
“He came on and changed the game against Crotone along with Alexis Sanchez.”
Adani also shared his thoughts on Inter’s style of play under Conte, which has divided opinion in Italy despite the Nerazzurri’s astonishing league form in 2021.
“Inter are the team that build the most play and complete most passes in their own half, it’s a style of play which favours Lukaku,” he explained.
“They play modern football in possession and, at the same time, they spend a lot of time without the ball, which in Serie A is fine.
“Conte’s work is successful in Italy, regardless of your personal preferences, but now he’ll need to establish himself in Europe and do a lot better there.”