It was a rare glimmer of sunshine for Juventus fans at the weekend as they beat Inter Milan 1-0 in the Derby D’Italia. The winner, from Filip Kostic was not without controversy as there were major question marks around an Adrien Rabiot handball in the build-up. The goal stood after a length VAR check, infuriating Inter and their supporters.
For all the criticism that Max Allegri’s side have faced this season, they find themselves heading into the international break in 7th place in the table, only 7 points behind fourth place AC Milan. Juventus are scheduled to have their appeal against the 15-point penalty on April 19 and if they win that appeal, they will move back into second place, making it very likely that they will be in the Champions League next season.
While Inter weren’t happy with the refereeing, neither were Juve, as Allegri stormed off into the tunnel several minutes before the match had come to an end, missing the two red cards after the final whistle for Leandro Paredes and Danilo D’Ambrosio.
“They didn’t need me anymore at that point. I was getting irritated, so rather than get myself booked or sent off, I decided it was best to leave. I left it in their hands, the players knew what they were doing,” assured Allegri.
“It was very important for us and always difficult to surprise Inter on home turf. We were able to win a physical match, the team pressed well and allowed very little at the back, but we wasted three or four really easy opportunities to score. The choice in the final ball, that is where we absolutely need to improve.
“I thank the team for giving me a nice relaxing break for international duty, because otherwise it’s a tense time. You have to win games also to enjoy the next few days of your life, so I tell the lads, I am of a certain age now, so please win and don’t make me suffer too much. They did well.”
Inter boss Simone Inzaghi did little to dispel the doubts surrounding him future as Inter’s performance drew more criticism from the Italian media.
La Gazzetta dello Sport raised further doubts about Inzaghi’s role at Inter, looking at their season as a whole and the changes made in the derby, saying:
“Nine defeats in the league are a condemnation. Inter without bite and in total confusion in the end. And Barella’s change deserves a question mark.”
Corriere dello Sport highlighted how the Nerazzurri are still clearly off the mark, despite their progression to the Champions League quarter-finals, commenting: “Inter continue not to be there, having lost the grip on the game.”
Tuttosport looked at Inzaghi’s tactical changes in the Derby d’Italia defeat, noting how his work did little to overturn the result, writing:
“Barella’s substitution isn’t convincing, he then tried to straighten out the game by switching to 4-2-3-1 but didn’t get much out of it.”
The irony of the criticism that Inzaghi and Algeria have suffered this year is that they will meet again next month for the Coppa Italia semi-final and that both clubs are the quarter-finals of the Champions League and Europa League respectively, with both clubs having favorable draws.
From the perspective of Bianconeri coach Allegri, however, these criticism don’t concern him much, and he feels that the same is true of Inzaghi.
“The truth is that winning is what matters in football, whoever wins is proven right,” the Juventus coach argued when asked about the criticisms of he and his Inter counterpart.
“Stock is taken at the end of the season,” he added.
“We can’t look at things now, we have to wait and see what happens when the dust settles.”