Inter Milan Leads Serie A, Juventus in Pursuit
|Lautaro Martinez (l) and Henrix Mkhitaryan after scoring on penalty the goal of 4-1 during the Serie A football match between FC Internazionale and AC Milan at San Siro stadium.(Image-Getty)
Inter Milan's dominant 5-1 victory over AC Milan in the derby has propelled them to the top of the Serie A table with a three-point lead, while Juventus trails behind in second place, two points adrift of the leaders. Inter aims to maintain their flawless start to the season as they face Empoli on Sunday.
Empoli, currently at the bottom of the table, is desperately seeking a change in fortunes after a humiliating 7-0 defeat to AS Roma, which led to the sacking of manager Paolo Zanetti. Aurelio Andreazzoli has been appointed as his replacement, marking his fourth stint with the club.
The disparity in their season starts is evident, with Inter holding a perfect record of four wins, while Empoli has yet to secure a single point from their opening four matches. Inter boasts the league's top-scoring offense with 13 goals, while Empoli has struggled to find the net and has conceded 12 goals.
Even during their previous Scudetto-winning season, Inter did not begin as strongly. In the 2020/21 season, they won just two of their first four fixtures, including a loss to Milan in the derby.
Inter appears poised to continue their impressive start, with Lautaro Martinez already scoring five goals, even without finding the net in the victory over Milan. In their last encounter with Empoli last season, Inter secured a 3-0 win.
Empoli's slim hope could rely on a potentially fatigued Inter following their midweek Champions League match against Real Sociedad.
In pursuit of Inter, Juventus faces Sassuolo on Saturday, while Milan aims for redemption from their derby embarrassment when they host Hellas Verona. Milan might be without keeper Mike Maignan due to a thigh strain.
Lazio, fresh from a 3-1 defeat against Juventus, seeks a rebound as they host Monza, who are one point ahead in the table.
Napoli, the defending champions, already trails Inter by five points and faces Bologna on Sunday after a draw against Genoa in their last outing.
AS Roma takes on Torino on Sunday, and Lecce, one of the season's surprise teams, hosts Genoa on Friday. Lecce remains unbeaten, joining Inter and Juventus as one of the three undefeated sides in Serie A this season. Notably, Lecce achieved a historic opening Serie A win this season by defeating Lazio, marking a significant milestone in the club's history.