Internazionale Qualitative Analysis

Serie A · Sun, 31.03.2019


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bruggeSS Lazio

Table of Contents

General Notes

  • Team plays with 4-2-3-1 formation, but very often switches to 4-3-3 with Borja Valero playing as left forward and Perisic as left midfielder

  • Team applies pressure only during build-up phase. In midfield Inter players usually wait until their opponent commits a mistake

  • Players often exchange their positions with each other. For example, Borja Valero often plays as a forward in addition to his main role of defensive midfielder. Brozovic often falls back deeply and plays as a central back even though his main role is defensive midfielder

  • Team attacks mainly through the wings by high crosses to the penalty box (goalkeeper area border, see video 1)

  • There is a lack of support of the player with the ball from his teammates (players without the ball remain stationary)

  • Very poor second ball anticipation

Video 1. Inter’s typical mass attack

Offensive Play

Transition to Offense

  • If the ball is won by attacking players they try to carry out a counter as fast as possible and do not wait for the support of other players (be aware of 1v1 situations here, video 2)

Video 2. Example of Inter’s counterattack

Offensive Organisation

  • Attacking players position themselves really wide during build-up phase (figure 1)

  • Often big space appears between players in midfield when defender with the ball (figure 2)

  • Borja Valero often plays as an attacker. He is a very clever player who always seeks a free space in order to create a promising passing lane for his teammates (video 3)

  • In the offensive third Inter players try to play one touch combinations and they do it decently

  • Team mainly attacks by long crosses to the opponent’s penalty box (between goal area and penalty spot)

  • Perisic often performs a run in behind defensive line in order to receive a promising long ball from his teammates

  • There is no support from other players when the ball is played out wide (tip: apply pressure when either a full back or a winger receives the ball)

  • Poor second ball anticipation

Figure 1. Players position really wide during build-up
Figure 2. Often big space appears between attackers and defending line when defender has the ball (tip: apply offensive pressing here)
Video 3. Valero’s good attacking actions

Defensive Play

Transition to Defense

  • Totally no reaction from forwards when transitioning to defense

  • Many opponent players left completely unmarked with lots of free space in front of them when Internazionale loses possession (see goal video 4, video 5)

  • All players (except forwards) run back willingly in order to prevent the opponent from a successful counterattack (see video 4, video 5)

Video 4. Goal video
Video 5. Defensive behavior during opponent’s counterattack

Defensive Organisation

  • Midfield pressing is very unassertive. Offensive pressing is only aggressive during opponent’s build-up phase or when team is losing

  • Team starts to apply pressure when the ball is played out wide

  • During opponent’s build-up phase Inter transforms to 4-3-3 formation with Borja Valero playing as left forward (exchanges his position with Perisic) and with big distances between the lines. Three attacking players stay near opponent’s penalty box and are ready to apply pressure (see figure 3)

  • A big space often appears between Skriniar and Asamoah which can be exploited when attacking through the right wing

  • Large space also appears between defensive line and midfielders (tip: use vertical direct sharp low ball in order to penetrate into the penalty box, figure 4)

Figure 3. Players positioning during opponent’s build-up
Figure 4. Large space often appears between the lines when defending

Set Plays

Set Plays for

  • Throw-ins: extremely fast when in the attacking third. Ball-boys are always ready to supply Inter player with the ball who then restarts the game immediately (video 6)

  • Throw-ins from the right side: D’Ambrosio throws backward to the central back

  • Throw-ins from the left side: when Asamoah then to the nearest free player, when Valero then long to the penalty box

  • Corners from the left side: Brozovic low or high to the nearest post

  • Short distance free kicks: Brozovic to the far post from the goalkeeper or a simple high ball to the penalty box (goalkeeper area)

  • Lateral free kicks from the right side: Politano to the nearest post

  • Long distance free kicks from midfield: Brozovic always plays medium or short distance low ball

Video 6. Throw-ins are executed instantly

Set Plays against

  • Long distance lateral free kick: all players in one line on penalty box border (see figure 5)

  • Corner kicks: two players protect the near post area, all other players use personal marking

  • Throw-ins: players mark their opponents closely when being in the offensive third

Figure 5. Example of players positioning during lateral free kick



Samir Handanovic #1

34 years
193 cm
Right foot
  • Very assertive and confident goalkeeper. The shot should be really precise and powerful in order to score from outside the penalty box

  • Can restart the game instantly by a long pass right after a corner kick

  • Able to dribble when under pressure in own penalty box (tip: anticipate)


Left Full Back
Kwadwo Asamoah #18

30 years
173 cm
Left foot
  • Able to play a decent long ball with his excellent left foot

  • Good in headers

  • Poor dribbling skills

  • Can dribble against multiple players when supporting attacking actions

  • Doesn’t like risky passes, prefers playing backwards

  • Plays a long ball to Perisic when the latter runs in a free space behind defensive line (similar to Messi-Alba interaction)

Left Center Back
João Miranda #23

34 years
186 cm
Right foot
  • Very clever player with perfect anticipation skills

  • Good in tackling. Tackles willingly

  • Excellent passing skills

Right Center Back
Milan Skriniar #37

24 years
187 cm
Right foot
  • Able to play a nice sharp vertical long distance low ball to offensive players (tip: anticipate his direct low ball and intercept, video 7)

  • Good anticipation skills

  • Not really good when defending in 1v1 situation (tip: set yourself at 1v1 duel against him)

  • Often plays long balls to the left to Perisic

Video 7. Anticipation and mistake by a typical low pass from Skriniar

Right Full Back
Danilo D’Ambrosio #33

30 years
180 cm
Right foot
  • Physically very strong and extremely good when defending in 1v1 situation (tip: avoid close distance to this player)

  • Fast and very dangerous in the offensive phase. Able to rush forward with the ball instantly leaving his opponent behind

  • Very good ball protection skills (video 8)

  • Poor medium distance passing skill

  • Often plays a medium distance high ball from the right side to the central area

  • Plays low long ball along the line when under pressure

Video 8. Very good ball protection skills from Danilo D’Ambrosio


Defensive Midfielder
Marcelo Brozovic #77

26 years
181 cm
Both feet
  • Conditionally very fit

  • Excellent passing skills (video 9)

  • Runs back willingly in order to support defensive actions during opponent’s counterattack

  • Can commit a mistake when playing a long ball with his left foot

  • Poor marking skills

  • High crosses to the far post with his left foot

  • Same as Skriniar: plays nice sharp direct vertical low ball through the middle to offensive players

Video 9. Example of a very good pass from Marcelo Brozovic

Defensive Midfielder
Borja Valero #20

34 years
175 cm
Right foot
  • Very clever player who is not afraid of taking risk actions during offensive phase

  • Always opens up in order to create a possible passing lane for his teammate (see video 3)

  • Good passing skills

  • Good in heading

  • Very aggressive in tackling

Central Attacking Midfielder
Matías Vecino #8

27 years
187 cm
Right foot
  • Good ball control

  • Bad field vision (video 10)

Video 10. Vecino’s poor field vision


Left Winger
Ivan Perisic #44

30 years
187 cm
Both feet
  • Very dangerous left foot

  • Very good first touch as well as his passing skill with one touch

  • Good in headers

  • Poor long pass

  • Surges forward to the right from his opponent when being at 1v1 and shots with his left foot at the nearest post

  • Always crosses with his left foot between goalkeeper area and the penalty spot

Right Winger
Matteo Politano #16

25 years
171 cm
Left foot
  • Very fast player who likes to run in behind defensive line

  • Dangerous in 1v1 situation

  • Tends to shift from the wing to the central zone and to shot with his powerful left foot (analogous to Messi)

Center Forward
Keita Baldé #11

24 years
184 cm
Both feet
  • Very good ball protection skills (be sure not to foul against him here, see video 11)

  • Usually shots powerfully at the nearest corner (tip to goalkeeper: be aware to protect the nearest post)

Video 11. Baldé’s good ball protection followed by a promising pass


Attacking Midfielder
Radja Nainggolan #14

30 years
175 cm
Right foot
  • Egoistic player who prefers to shot instead of playing more promising pass to his teammate (video 12)

Video 12. Nainggolan demonstrates his individualism