Lukaku's profligacy frustrates Inter coach Inzaghi

By Sports Desk April 01, 2023

Simone Inzaghi did not hide his frustration at Romelu Lukaku's struggles in front of goal after Inter lost 1-0 to Fiorentina on Saturday.

Inter's losing streak in Serie A was extended to their worst in six years as Giacomo Bonaventura's second-half header proved decisive at San Siro.

The Nerazzurri have now lost three straight top flight matches, with Bonaventura's winner coming shortly after a woeful miss from Lukaku.

Having rediscovered his goalscoring touch while on international duty with Belgium, Lukaku was unable to transfer that form across to his club side as he failed to hit the target from close range with the goal gaping.

No Inter player had more shots than his three, with Lukaku not managing to get any of them on target, despite accumulating 1.2 expected goals.

While not pinning the blame entirely on Lukaku – who is reported to have confronted Inzaghi about a lack of opportunities while he has been fit this season – Inter's coach was quick to point out the importance of those misses.

Speaking to DAZN, Inzaghi said: "If he had scored those chances, Lukaku's performance would be judged in a very different way.

"His role is to create the opportunities, make the movements that the team needs.

"He wasn't the only one who had chances today, so I wouldn't focus only on Romelu."

Inzaghi also stressed he is ultimately responsible for turning Inter's fortunes around. 

"There is great disappointment, we lost two consecutive home matches," he said. "We need to work more, starting with me.

"At the moment, we need to be more determined, because we had so many chances to score and we should have done.

"I cannot ask for more in terms of effort, as the players did everything I asked of them."

Inzaghi is not wrong. While Fiorentina had more shots (19 to 16) and got the same number of attempts on target (three each), Inter finished with a 2.8 xG compared to the visitors' 1.2, suggesting the quality of opportunities that went their way was far greater.

Lukaku's glaring miss came from by far the best opportunity of the match, with Opta's model estimating the chance would be converted 92 per cent of the time (0.92 xG).

The 29-year-old's future is uncertain. He is on loan at Inter, but due to return to parent club Chelsea at the end of the season.

Before the match, Inter chief Giuseppe Marotta told DAZN: "[Lukaku's] love for the Inter jersey is 10 out of 10, we'll evaluate the prospects with Chelsea."

Related items

  • Tadic tips 'hungry' Bellingham to win the Ballon d'Or Tadic tips 'hungry' Bellingham to win the Ballon d'Or

    Jude Bellingham "has everything to win the next Ballon d'Or", Serbia skipper Dusan Tadic insisted after his side fell victim to England's star midfielder.

    Bellingham was the hero with his first-half header ensuring Gareth Southgate's side got off to a winning start at Euro 2024, as they edged out the Eagles 1-0 in Gelsenkirchen.

    The Real Madrid midfielder built on the momentum from his memorable debut season with Los Blancos, for whom he scored 23 goals and helped win LaLiga and the Champions League.

    The second player after Michael Owen to score at the World Cup and European Championship before turning 21, he is also the first to do so for the Three Lions while playing his club football outside of England.

    And Tadic, who appeared as a second-half substitute in Serbia's first match at the European Championship as a unified nation, paid tribute to the 20-year-old.

    When asked whether he thought Bellingham was the difference in the Group C contest, the Eagles skipper told reporters: "Yes, definitely. I think he is a great player and a great personality. I think he has everything to win the next Ballon d'Or.

    "I think everything that he did was great today, he showed personality, he took England to the next level. He was always asking for the ball and I think he had a great game.

    "What I think is most important for such a young player is that he always takes responsibility. That is amazing to see, and you can see he is very hungry."

  • Tadic tips 'hungry' Bellingham to 'win next Ballon d'Or' Tadic tips 'hungry' Bellingham to 'win next Ballon d'Or'

    Jude Bellingham "has everything to win the next Ballon d'Or", Serbia skipper Dusan Tadic insisted after his side fell victim to England's star midfielder.

    Bellingham was the hero with his first-half header ensuring Gareth Southgate's side got off to a winning start at Euro 2024, as they edged out the Eagles 1-0 in Gelsenkirchen.

    The Real Madrid midfielder built on the momentum from his memorable debut season with Los Blancos, for whom he scored 23 goals and helped win LaLiga and the Champions League.

    The second player after Michael Owen to score at the World Cup and European Championship before turning 21, he is also the first to do so for the Three Lions while playing his club football outside of England.

    And Tadic, who appeared as a second-half substitute in Serbia's first match at the European Championship as a unified nation, paid tribute to the 20-year-old.

    When asked whether he thought Bellingham was the difference in the Group C contest, the Eagles skipper told reporters: "Yes, definitely. I think he is a great player and a great personality. I think he has everything to win the next Ballon d'Or.

    "I think everything that he did was great today, he showed personality, he took England to the next level. He was always asking for the ball and I think he had a great game.

    "What I think is most important for such a young player is that he always takes responsibility. That is amazing to see, and you can see he is very hungry."

  • Bellingham makes more history with England opener against Serbia Bellingham makes more history with England opener against Serbia

    Jude Bellingham became the second player to score at the World Cup and European Championship before turning 21, with the opening goal against Serbia at Euro 2024.

    The Real Madrid midfielder opened the Three Lions' account in Germany, heading home Bukayo Saka's cross in the 13th minute of the Group C clash.

    Bellingham followed in the footsteps of compatriot Michael Owen, who found the net at the 1998 World Cup and 2000 European Championship before turning 21.

    The first European player to make an appearance at three major international tournaments before turning 21, the 20-year-old is also the first Three Lions player to score at both tournaments while playing his club football outside England.

    His strike, timed at 12 minutes and 11 seconds, was also the quickest Serbia have conceded at a European Championship, since Frank Arnesen scored seven minutes and five seconds into their match against Denmark in 1984.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.