Inter Take Serie A Lead: Can Anyone Stop Their Title Charge?

On Sunday, Formula One fans were left stunned after witnessing one of the greatest finales on sports history. The young Max Verstappen literally snatched his first championship at the last gasp after overtaking his rival Lewis Hamilton on the very last lap of the very last race.

Nevertheless, Calcio fans also witnessed a change at the top of the league table, even though it was significantly less dramatic and less memorable than the one we saw in Abu Dhabi. After all, the defending champions were never going to suffer too much against the hapless Cagliari.

However, kudos to Inter who at least put up an entertaining display at the Giuseppe Meazza, with the likes of Lautaro Martinez, Hakan Calhanoglu, Nicolò Barella and even Alexis Sanchez securing a 4-0 win in a brilliant fashion, marked by several exquisite goals.

After losing their Scudetto-winning manager Antonio Conte and selling two of their biggest stars in Romelu Lukaku and Achraf Hakimi, many among us felt that the Nerazzurri will lose their edge, opening the door for contenders to rise north and south.

While Napoli and Milan cemented themselves as Scudetto contenders early on, they now find themselves trailing behind Inter.

Close Race or Simply a Mirage?

From a first look, one would feel that the current table has the making of an epic title race. Inter are now on 40 points, Milan right behind them on 39, Atalanta rose to third with 37, and Napoli complete the top four with 36 points.

However, this rosy picture might simply be a mirage that hides another blowout – reminiscently to last season.

Few months ago, the Beneamata were trailing the leaders by seven points. And while we all felt that Simone Inzaghi’s project is progressing, we didn’t expect them to cut the gap and take the lead this quickly.

Inter took their game up a notch, displaying the type of performances that you’d expect from the reigning champions and Scudetto favorites, but at the same time, found very little resistance from the Rossoneri and Partenopei who are dropping points left and right.

It’s hard to blame these two clubs for their latest shortcomings, after all, their limited squads couldn’t truly cope with the grueling schedule amidst their injury crisis.

And yet, we were counting on them to make the Inter’s mission is bit more complicated. At least Milan took the honorary title of “Winter Champions” last season as they managed to hold the lead until January.

But as soon as Inter overtook them, their path was clear towards the Scudetto title, and this could prove to be the case yet again.

When Verstappen took the lead last Sunday, we all saw the writing on the wall. Surely Hamilton attempted to retake it on one or two occasions, but the Dutchman was too well-equipped (thanks to his fresh tires) to be bothered by his fallen rival’s desperate attempts.

So while the neutral fan is hoping to see a historic title race that goes to the wire, one club appear to be better equipped than the rest, and after taking the lead, only a major bottle job stands between Inter and their second straight Scudetto title.

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