Legendary former Inter President Massimo Moratti feels that Inter’s main rivals for the Serie A title at this stage are Napoli.
Speaking to Italian broadcaster Radio Anch’io Lo Sport, the former Nerazzurri President named the Partenopei as the Nerazzurri’s most formidable challengers and also spoke about the situations of Lautaro Martinez, Romelu Lukaku, and many others.
The Nerazzurri took a big step forward in the Serie A title race over the weekend, beating Hellas Verona before seeing both of their major rivals drop points yesterday.
AC Milan remain two points ahead of Inter after their draw with Torino, albeit with the Nerazzurri having a key game in hand with which they can go ahead of their city rivals.
Napoli, on the other hand, lost their clash with Fiorentina, and now they are level on points with the Nerazzurri, who once again have a game in hand.
However, Moratti still feels that in terms of their quality and style of play, the Partenopei are still the team that Inter have the most to worry about.
“They express themselves very well on the pitch and have found a good balance in midfield with many good players,” he said.
“In Naples they often find themselves in these situations,” he said of the Partenopei now chasing, “and yesterday Fiorentina played really well. I didn’t expect it though, and I find them to be the most serious rivals for Inter.”
Of Inter’s renewed status as favourites for the Scudetto, he said that “The numbers indicate it, but it’s been a season that throws something new out every weekend and ensures that there’s a new possible winner.”
“However, it seems to me that Inter have taken the right step by playing really well,” he added.
On summer signings, Moratti stated that “I consider Dybala to be so good that I would always sign him.”
“It depends on our centre-forward,” he continued, “I think we would need him. If it’s not Lukaku, a backup player has to be brought in. Or even a starter.”
On the financial difficulties in football, he reflected that “The situation has been made difficult by the pandemic. It was already so before, but now the real struggle has arrived.”
“It’s not only the case for football,” he went on, “but for this sport it has to be hoped that we can continue as before because the matches are special for the way that they can distract us from the tension in our lives.”
Regarding the decline in form by striker Lautaro Martinez, the former President stated that “I don’t know why it is, but he promises a lot. For two or three years we’ve though that he’s stable and top-quality.”
“It hasn’t happened yet,” he went on, “I don’t know if it’s because he doesn’t play all the time or for other reasons, but he has class, he’s lively in the game, he is brave. We hope that in the few games remaining he can express himself better.”
“Is Dzeko better without him?” he posed, “Correa is not bad as a player, he’s intelligent and puts Dzeko in positions to have more chances. Dzeko is another top-level player when he gets going.”
“When he’s in form there’s nothing wrong with him,” he said of the Bosnian. “What we ask for now is consistency, there are only a few matches to go and you have to give it your all.”
Moratti also praised the work of AC Milan coach Stefano Pioli, stating that “This year Milan have already accomplished a lot, I think the fans should thank Pioli because he did very well.”
“They’re in a tired bit of form, as happened at Inter for so many matches,” he went on. “They’re in a moment of crisis. Certainly there is crisis in attack, which played very badly last night, the game was not great.”
“Yesterday we saw Manchester City-Liverpool abroad and quite honestly there is a noticeable difference in the quality of play,” he admitted, “a different pace due to the quality.”
“They know how to to go faster because they know how to treat the ball differently,” he suggested. “Some of our teams are in crisis but they haven’t expressed themselves at their best.”
Going back to the title race, he said that “Juve, unfortunately, are not out of the running. They manage to win one way or another. There are only a few weeks left, but we must always make sure that they do not creep up slowly.”
“There are so few matches left to go that the main thing is not to make mistakes,” he said of the title race.
“Simple games always frighten me,” he added, “they’re the ones where you lose and win the title. You need to stay focused, for good luck I prefer not to say anything.”
Of current Roma and former Inter coach Jose Mourinho, he said that “Every now and then I hear from Mourinho and he is always lively, affectionate, just the same friend as I last spoke to.”
“Perhaps even more so,” he continued, before joking that “I wish him very well, but Inter is involved as well, so I don’t know what to tell him.”
Regarding the situation of Ivan Perisic, he said that “I understand that it may be difficult for the directors, but he needs to be extended.