How Far Can Inter Go In The Champions League This Season?

How Far Can Inter Go In The Champions League This Season?
August 12, 2022 15:45
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Since winning the UEFA Champions League at the Santiago Bernabeu by beating Bayern Munich two goals to nil thanks to a brace from Diego Milito in 2010, the Nerazzurri haven’t fared well in the league of Champions.

The highest Inter has climbed since that time is the quarter-finals a year later, which featured a forgettable 7-3 aggregate loss to then Bundesliga heavyweights, Schalke 04.

Inter has since crashed out of the competition two times at the round of 16, three times at the group stage and failed to qualify altogether for Europe’s most prestigious club competition on six occasions.

Last season they threw in the towel at the round of 16, albeit to a better side, Liverpool.

With the start of a new season in the CL almost beginning, every conscientious football fan is primed up for the exciting wins, the drab draws, exciting events like the Ignition Live Casino and the heart-breaking losses (there won’t be many of these, hopefully).

Putting all the fanfare aside, combining optimism and reality is vital in considering just how far the Nerazzurri can go.

Did Inter Milan Qualify For The Champions League?

Not to state the obvious, but yes, they did. Inter Milan finished second in the league, narrowly losing out to their rivals AC Milan in the 2021/22 Seria A season, which guaranteed them automatic qualification into the champions league.

Regardless of their focus on the Scudetto, Inter still hopes to regain its spot in European folklore by winning the Champions league.

This is a feat that would sweep everyone off their feet – since they are not favourites to win the competition like the usual suspects: Real Madrid, Barcelona, Chelsea, Liverpool and Bayern Munich.

Who Will Inter Milan Play In The UCL

Like every other club that qualified for the competition, the Nerazzurri will find out their fate on Thursday, 25 August, in Istanbul, Turkey, where the group stage draw is set to hold.

Simone Inzaghi’s side will be hoping for a favourable draw in the competition, allowing them to replicate last season’s success.

Unlike the 2021/22 season when they were seeded in pot one (because they competed as Champions of Italy), they will be seeded in pot three this time as a result of their score of 67.000 on the UEFA clubs coefficient ranking.

Typically, no club is happy to be in Pot Three because the chances of locking heads with two European heavyweights in the group stage are very high.

But this squad has come a long way and will be looking to leverage the kind of energy that successful underdogs have.

Inter’s Squad Strength

Inter bolstered their ranks this summer with the addition of Andre Onana, who is set to become the first-choice goalkeeper.

And as far as squad strength goes, they are well stocked in the goalkeeping department, where club captain Handanovic is expected to deputize alongside Cordaz, who should serve as third option.

Nothing much changes at the center-back positions except for the departure of Andrea Ranocchia, who accumulated a total of 98-mins in the last champions league campaign; he isn’t expected to be missed.

In the midfield positions, Inter Milan are spoiled for choice. They have the likes of Brozovic, Asllani, Barella, Calhanoglu and Mkhitaryan to pick from.

A front line of Lukaku, Martinez and Correa is very much on the cards, while Eden Dzeko will prove to be a threat when called upon.

The apparent weakness in the squad comes from the left-wing-back position. Barring any new arrival, Dutchman Gosens is expected to fill that role after the departure of Ivan Perisic to Tottenham Hotspur.

However, Dumfries and Darmian will take up the right wing-back slot, with Dumfries likely to be the first-choice wingback.

Our Prediction

Inter Milan could play a 3-4-1-2 formation, which allows them to soak up pressure and hit teams on counter-attacks. This tactic, if executed right, will make things very difficult for teams who like to be on the front foot.

However, Inter Milan has recently struggled to replicate their league form in the Champions League, having just broken their group stage duck last season.

If they could avoid drawing two European heavy-weights in the group stage, we see a round-of-16 finish and perhaps a quarter-finals finish if they get a kinder draw at the round-of-16.

A semi-final finish will most likely surpass the club’s and the fans’ explanation. While winning the competition looks unlikely, it is not impossible. We’ve seen wilder things in football, haven’t we?

Jose Mourinho 2003/04 and 2009/10 Porto and Inter sides and Chelsea 2011/12 have come up with similar victories despite the odds.

By Editorial Staff

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