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It was home: Simona Inzaghi meets Lazio at the start of the Inter-Walla adventure! sport


After more than 20 years at Lazio, Simona Inzaghi decided to take on a new challenge. His Inter is fascinating and very offensive at the beginning of his term, but not everything is rosy and now he is visiting the ex

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It was homey: Simona Inzaghi meets Lazio at the start of the Inter adventure

After more than 20 years at Lazio, Simona Inzaghi decided to take on a new challenge.

His Inter is fascinating and very offensive at the beginning of his term, but not everything is rosy, and the test at the Ex)'s stadium may be very significant for the continuation of his first season outside the familiar and beloved nest.


  • Simona Inzaghi

  • Inter

  • Lazio

Michael Yochin

Friday, October 15, 2021, 12:00 p.m.

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"It was the hardest decision of my life," Simona Inzaghi wrote to Lazio fans as he chose to end his long tenure at the club and respond to Inter's invitation. "Lazio will always be my home," he declared, which is no exaggeration. He even lingered for days before he managed to get to the training facility and pick up his belongings. It's not just emotional to end a 22 year chapter in life. More than two decades!

Inzaghi joined the Eagles at the age of 23, after one good season at Piacenza, on the standard of Pippo's younger brother - he always stayed with that image as a player, nor did he really yearn to break free from it.

Lazio were then the richest and most ambitious team in Italy, and already in its first season in 1999/00 Simona was honored to win the championship, but only as a bench player in the team of Sven Goran Erickson starring Marcelo Salas and Alan Bucic.

He then kept his best performances for the Champions League, scoring a quartet for the Marseille network, but later it turned out that this was his most productive period in the team.

As the years went by, his share shrank more and more, mainly due to injuries, and it was possible to retire even before the age of 34.

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Championship in his first season as a Lazio player, but a more impressive career as a coach.

Simona Inzaghi with Sven Goran Erickson (Photo: GettyImages)

Corona eliminated a possible Scudetto

Immediately after hanging up his shoes, Inzaghi was appointed coach of the young team, and worked in it in industrial silence for six years until he was suddenly called in April 2016 to temporarily fill the place of the sacked Stefano Fioli. The club's intention was to sign a much more experienced coach, and Marcelo Bailesa did arrive - but he did not like what he saw and canceled the contract two days later. Thus, quite coincidentally, Inzaghi got the reins instead of moving to Salernitana, owner Claudio Lotito's second club - and Lazio won the services of one of the best coaches in its history.

Simona not only achieved great results, but also built a very attractive team that attracted spectators to the Olimpico and enjoyed popularity among the neutral audience.

She went all out even against the strongest rivals, swung the trophy in 2019, and reached its peak at a rather unfortunate time for her.

In April 2020, before the forced break in the shadow of the Corona plague, Lazio gained phenomenal momentum with 21 unbeaten league games, dreaming of a sensational Scudetto.

When the competition resumed in June at the end of more than three months, there was nothing left of that momentum, but the Eagles still finished in fourth place and qualified for the Champions League after a 13-year drought, reaching the quarter-finals, where they were unfortunately drawn against Bayern Munich.

Identified with Milan and supported his brother's signing at Inter.

Pippo Inzaghi with his brother Simona (Photo: GettyImages)

Pippo also supported the transition

Yes, those were happy years. Inzaghi built a cohesive band with a lot of confidence, rehabilitated Chiro Immobilia, promoted Sergei Milinkovich-Savic, made Luis Alberto flourish in a completely free role, and the connection with the audience was very strong. The club were interested, of course, in renewing the mentor's contract, and at one point it seemed like it might happen, but the departure of Antonio Conte from Inter changed the direction. Still, the previous season was far less successful, Lazio was ranked only sixth a huge distance from Narazzi at the top, and Inzaghi felt inside him a kind of extraction. He was ready for a new challenge at the age of 45, and for that he had to leave his beloved home. "It was the right choice," said brother Pippo, and it's not a trivial matter from the mouth of the man so identified with rival Milan.

The new champion gambled on Inzaghi for a number of reasons.

First, his financial demands were reasonable, and this was critical for a club in financial crisis.

Second, beyond being a brilliant professional, Inzaghi prefers the 2-5-3 method with three brakes, which is essentially similar to that applied by Conte, and therefore does not require a major tactical shock (like, for example, the one currently going through Lazio itself when it appointed Maurizio Sari locked up Only about 3-3-4).

Third, the management believed that the comfortable nature of the coach would allow him to be easily absorbed in the locker room, nor would he make problems in terms of staff building.

At Lazio, he was used to working with what he had, and never made trouble for sporting director Igli Tara.

His easy-going nature made it easy for management to choose him.

Simona Inzaghi with CEO in Mouth Maruta (Photo: GettyImages, Quality Sport Images)

Risking for the first time not meeting expectations

"I'm here to continue last season's success," Inzaghi declared upon his arrival in San Siro, and he understands well that for the first time in his life he may face harsh criticism, and will not be treated to silk gloves. As an actor, he never had particularly high expectations. As a coach, he surpassed expectations in Lazio in the first place, so even stumbles were always well received - he was the ultimate idol. At Inter, the situation is completely different, and it will be easy to label him a loser if the business does not go as planned. He stepped into Conte's huge shoes, and was supposed to keep the crown in the very competitive league, when circumstances were not always in his favor.

Inzaghi knew that Ashraf Hakimi might be sold, but Romulo Lukaku announced at the beginning of the summer his intention to stay, so the sale of the Belgian scorer to Chelsea disrupted preparations, forcing the bringing of veteran Edin Dzeko from Rome.

The breakup of the Belgian's perfect team with Lautro Martinez could, on paper, have hurt the attack in the first stage when the Argentine learns to play with the Bosnian, but in practice the balance is soon found.

The comfortable game schedule at the start of the season helped, and Inzaghi's new Inter introduced showy and very prolific football.

The convenient game board gave them time to learn to cooperate.

Edin Dzeko with Lautro Martins (Photo: GettyImages, Gabriele Maltinti)

Dialogue, flexibility and freedom

Since the 1960s, the black-and-blues have not started the season with 22 right-handed goals in seven rounds, and Inzaghi has been praised, among other things, for efficient utilization of staff and use of substitutions. When he went hard against Verona in the second round, Joaquin Korea - the man brought in from Lazio along with the boss - came in and scored a double that brought victory. When the rotation did not really work against Sesotho in the last round, Inzaghi made a square substitution in the 57th minute, Dzeko scored immediately upon his entry, and Inter fell behind to win. In general, the team strives to hold the ball more than in the Conte era, the attacks are a bit more orderly, and the number of chances is high in almost every game. Even when she missed them all against Real Madrid and lost in the last minute of the Champions League opener, Inzaghi argued with a fair amount of justice that it was bad luck.

Inzaghi's method is based on five principles, which worked for Lazio and were also explained to Inter players before the start of the season. The coach advocates dialogue, does not force his opinions and tries to create as open a relationship as possible with his trainees - they are welcome to express positions and offer suggestions for improvement. "He was like a big brother to us," Luis Alberto Bellatio said of it. The second rule is continuity - meaning not trying to break the existing structure unnecessarily, just because the new coach has arrived. Third, Inzaghi encourages flexibility, meaning he adapts himself to the opponent while moving, and encourages players to make adjustments on their own. The fourth rule is initiative - Inzaghi's teams do not go down to the bunker. Finally, the fifth general is freedom, and here there is a considerable change compared to Conte who likes to get his players to perform certain actions almost automatically. At the new Inter, all players have a free hand to create, and this is especially true of the offensive ties of the Cannes Calhanoilo type.

The memories will flood him.

Simona Inzaghi with Lazio fans in the background (Photo: GettyImages)

Will feel weird on the guest bench

However, despite the encouraging start, not everything is perfect.

Inter have scored 17 points in seven games, which is wonderful - but Napoli and AC Milan are still ahead of them.

In the Champions League, the situation already seems problematic after two games without a right goal, and the pair of encounters against Sheriff Tiraspol are surprisingly of paramount importance for the sequel.

And in the local arena, except for the dramatic and fascinating battle against Atalanta that ended in a 2: 2 draw they have yet to meet a rival from the top echelons, and despite this have failed to maintain a clean sheet since the first round.

It’s easy to get excited about the new Inter, but very many question marks hover over it, and Inzaghi may face tough challenges soon.

Games against Juventus and AC Milan are waiting around the corner, and on Saturday he embarks on the most exciting visit of all for him, at Lazio in Rome.

It will not be easy for Inzaghi to sit down at Olympico on the bench of the visiting team.

Memories will flood him, and he still very much loves the audience in Azure and all that this club has provided him for more than two decades.

He also knows in depth the qualities of the stars who will try to inflict his first league loss on his new team - they are certainly capable of that.

It's the most exciting game in Europe this weekend, and it's at the center.

And after that, he will know better if the step he took in the summer was really right for career advancement.

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Source: walla

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