Legendary former Napoli, Parma, and Chelsea striker Gianfranco Zola believes that Inter are among the favourites for this season’s Scudetto, but that they face stiff competition from several rivals.
Speaking to Milan-based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport in an interview published in today’s print edition, the 55-year-old gave his thoughts on who the top teams in Serie A are at the moment and singled out a key player who could allow one team to rise above the rest in the form of Napoli’s Victor Osimhen.
Inter won their first Scudetto in eleven years last season and did so in emphatic fashion, finishing twelve points clear of their nearest rivals in the table, but this season already looks like it will be a much tighter affair at the top of Serie A.
“I don’t want to sound too cautious, we have to think that we are only on the fourth day, but Napoli are showing signs of great strength and quality,” Zola said of the Scudetto race.
He identified the Partenopei’s rivals as “The two Milan clubs, Mourinho’s Roma, and Juventus. The ten points behind are many, but they can be made up.”
One of the things that ultimately separated Inter from the pack last season was the quality up front of Romelu Lukaku, with the Belgian leading Serie A in combined goals and assists.
With Lukaku gone to Chelsea, Zola believes that Napoli’s Osimhen is the player closest to him in quality in Serie A right now, and that the Nigerian can have a galvanizing effect for the Partenopei.
“When he arrived in Italy two years ago, I didn’t know him well and I researched him,” Zola said. “I discovered a player very good in his movement. With his athletic strength he can be devastating. He is Lukaku’s heir. He is young and has enormous room for improvement.”