Inter was once considered Argentina’s unofficial ambassador in Serie A Nerazzurri became the ultimate dominant force in Italian football in pre-Calciopoli Throughout the era, Roberto Mancini and his successor José Mourinho could always count on a solid Argentine block led by Javier Zanetti, which included the likes of Walter Samuel, Esteban Cambiasso and Julio Cruz.
But that was a long time. Nowadays the Albicelestes Stars are no longer crowded Beneamtas Dressing room, despite the influential presence of Lautaro Martinez and his compatriot Joaquin Correa.
True to its name, Internazionale’s squad is currently made up of a mosaic of international nationalities combined to form an impressive side. But if we choose a nationality that stands out from everyone else this season, Croatia would be our pick.
Despite Inter having just two ‘Checkered Stars’ in their squad, the impact of Ivan Perisic and Marcelo Brozovic has arguably made the difference this season, tipping the scales in Simone Inzaghi’s favor in the ever-entertaining Scudetto race.
We’ll start with the older Croatian. Perisic celebrated his 33rd birthday last February but you wouldn’t say it when witnessing his energetic performances up and down the left flank.
The former Wolfsburg player experienced incredible ups and downs with Giuseppe Meazza. Having served the club for more than four years, Antonio Conte decided on arrival that the winger was unsuitable for his infamous 3-5-2 formation.
But after being shown the door, Perisic surprisingly found a place at Bayern Munich and spent a season on loan at the Bavarian giants. Twelve months later, the Croatia international triumphantly returned to Milan with a Champions League medal in his pocket.
Perhaps his exploits in Germany convinced Conte to add him back to his squad. While things were slow at first, Perisic gradually cemented himself as Inter’s first-choice left-back, proving his willingness to sacrifice himself and contributing at both ends of the pitch.
If last season’s theme was redemption, this time it’s about excellence. Under Inzaghi’s tutelage, the 33-year-old is enjoying a late career resurgence and is once again one of the club’s main sources of creativity.
Between significant goals and great assists, Perisic leads the way Nerazzurris on course for their second consecutive league title and has even upped their game in recent weeks as we entered the final and crucial phase of the season.
In a previous Cult of Calcio article, we explained why Brozovic is Inter’s most indispensable player. Despite this, it is enough to compare the results of the club during his presence and those registered in his absence to reassure our case.
The Croatian is simply the fulcrum that ties everything together. He helps his team move the ball forward, break the opposition’s high pressure, defend the defensive line, and everything in between. Also, Inter don’t have another ingrained playmaker who could emulate his role on the pitch.
This partly explains how Inter lost points against Torino and Fiorentina and were beaten against Sassuolo in the last three Serie A games that Brozovic missed.
These results left the Beneamatas Title hopes on the brink of total collapse. However, the registers The timely return completely changed the fortunes of the club, and within weeks Inter suddenly reclaimed their status as a club scudetto favourites.
If Inzaghi’s men manage to lead their rivals Milan and Napoli to the title, black and blue ribbons will engulf the golden trophy for the second year in a row, and that Nerazzurri the supporters will primarily have their two red-and-white soldiers to thank for it.