The respective fixture lists of Inter Milan and Juventus could play a key role in the outcome of the Serie A title race in the coming months.
Today’s print edition of Rome-based newspaper Corriere dello Sport, via FCInterNews.
If either Inter coach Simone Inzaghi or his Juventus counterpart Max Allegri were asked about the fixture list, they would likely give a stock answer.
There are no easy matches in Serie A, they would say.
And in truth, that’s not entirely off-base. Shock results are always possible in the Italian top flight.
But realistically, the fixture list is always a factor.
And in this respect, Juventus could feel that the conditions are there for them to overtake Inter at the top of the table in the next few months.
Inter & Juventus Serie A Fixture Lists Compared
Inter and Juventus both return to action next weekend against teams in the relegation battle.
The Nerazzurri host Hellas Verona. Meanwhile, Juventus face Salernitana in Campania.
It should also be noted that the Bianconeri will come up against the same opposition in the Coppa Italia just a few days earlier, on Thursday.
So both Inter and Juventus will have a good opportunity to collect three points this weekend.
That would confirm the Nerazzurri as “winter champions.” But only with a slender two-point advantage over Juventus.
But from then on, things get tricker for Inter.
There are “head-to-head” clashes with Fiorentina, Roma, and Atalanta on the way in the next couple months.
And even the “smaller” teams Inter face are not sides at the bottom end of the table. Form teams like Monza and Bologna await Inter before mid-March.
Juventus, on the other hand, have more teams in or around the relegation battle on the way in the next eight or nine weeks.
Napoli and Lazio at the start of March will be a major test. But otherwise, thinks don’t look too hard for the Bianconeri to navigate.
And then there’s the matter of matches in other competitions.
Inter have at least one match in the Supercoppa Italiana – possibly two, if they overcome Lazio in a tricky semifinal tie.
And in Feburary and March, Inter play a two-legged Champions League round of sixteen tie against Atletico Madrid.
These knockout matches against strong opposition would be enough of a drain on Inter’s fitness and mental distraction on their own. That’s before factoring in travel to Riyadh and Madrid.
Juventus, if they beat Salernitana on Thursday, will face a Coppa Italia quarterfinal match against Frosinione the following week.
Bu that’s the extent of the Bianconeri’s cup commitment before April.
And in the centre of it all is a head-to-head meeting between Inter and Juventus at the start of February.
That match could prove to be decisive for the title.