Sacchi calls for balance as Inter aim for Lukaku, Martinez and Dybala attack

By Sports Desk June 17, 2022

Inter cannot rely on building an attack with Romelu Lukaku, Paulo Dybala and Lautaro Martinez as that would expose Simone Inzaghi's side in defence.

That is the message from Milan legend Arrigo Sacchi, who compared the strategy to the plans of Real Madrid in the early 2000s when they assembled a team of attacking superstars.

The Los Blancos star-studded line-up included the likes of David Beckham, Ronaldo Nazario, Raul, Luis Figo and Zinedine Zidane, but they went six straight seasons without winning a Champions League knockout tie between 2004 and 2010.

Inter are looking to knock fierce rivals Milan off the Serie A summit, with Inzaghi attempting to bring Lukaku back on loan from Chelsea, while Dybala seems set to join the Nerazzurri on a free transfer.

Lukaku fired Inter to Scudetto glory in 2020-21 and across his two-year spell, no Nerazzurri player scored more goals (64), provided more assists (17) or created as many chances (133) in all competitions.

Martinez was comfortably Inter's top Serie A scorer in the 2021-22 campaign, with his 21 goals eight ahead of nearest challenger Edin Dzeko, while Dybala scored the most league goals for Juventus (10).

Combining the trio may lead to additional firepower for Inzaghi, but Sacchi insists Inter must focus on balance as opposed to attacking riches.

"You don't make teams with statues," he told Gazzetta dello Sport. "I was at Real Madrid as director of football [in 2004-05] and they asked me to coach. Do you know what the attack was?

"Beckham, Raul, Ronaldo, Zidane, Figo. On the bench, we had [Fernando] Morientes and [Michael] Owen. It wasn't a team, it was a film but it lacked the plot.

"So I thanked the president but said no. To protect the defence we would have needed two defensive players with bullet-proof vests. Teams always need balance."

Sacchi also believes Lukaku, Martinez and Dybala would be unwilling to do the defensive work to help those behind them.

"You need a full team who are always active – in attack and in defence. You need to move, take part in the action, play together," he added.

"Then you can consider winning the ball back quickly when the opposition has it. If you give up three players to the opposition, it means there are only eight in defence rather than 11.

"The willingness and physical characteristics of the player are fundamental. I don't believe, but I could be wrong, that Lukaku, Martinez and Dybala have these qualities."

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