Nicolo Barella and Henrikh Mkhitaryan have won praise for getting the better of Torino in the midfield battle as Inter Milan won 2-0.

Today’s print edition of Rome-based newspaper Corriere dello Sport, via FCInterNews, hand both of the pair scores of 7/10 in the player ratings for the match.

Facing Torino was always going to be a tough ask for Inter’s midfielders.

The Granata play an aggressive, man-marking style that aims to disrupt the opposition in midfield.

Torino trio Ivan Ilic, Samuele Ricci, and Adrien Tameze certainly possessed the physicality and stamina to make life difficult for Inter’s midfield trio.

But the Nerazzurri never really looked overrun centrally.

It may not have been the most fluid of performances from Inter in possession. But that’s not what mattered.

Inter did stay more than competitive, putting their stamp on the tempo of the match.,

That had a lot to do with deep-lying midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu.

But the gritty performances, technical quality, and tactical awareness of Mkhitaryan and Barella were what really gave Inter’s midfield its structure.

Barella & Mkhitaryan Praised For Winning Midfield Battle For Inter Vs Torino

In the second half, Torino went down a man. Tameze received a straight red card for a challenge on Mkhitaryan.

That run by Mkhitaryan was a key moment in the match, as it cut through the Torino defensive structure and forced Tameze into a difficult decision.

Even at 35 years of age, Mkhitaryan’s energy was on full display.

Then once Torino were without Tameze, they lost the most important aspect of their defensive strategy. They could not prevent Inter from having a spare man in midfield.

At that point, the quality of Barella and Mkhitaryan became more of a factor.

Inter were able to control the possession and move the ball with more fluidity, scoring twice in quick succession.