It's been a full decade since Inter Milan last won a Serie A championship but the Nerazzurri are once again roaring under their new manager. Juventus have won every Serie A title over the past eight years, an unprecedented spell of dominance even by their standards, but that could be at an end this season.
Antonio Conte took the Inter hot-seat in the summer and hasn't looked back since, making marquee signings that have made a huge difference to the club's fortunes.
What if Conte didn't take the reigns though? What if you took control of the blue half of Milan? Here's our ultimate guide to bringing silverware back to Milan in Football Manager 2020!
REALISTIC: Inter Milan's targets are as you'd expect for a club in their position.
Inter's board has surprisingly few requirements when it comes to your approach. You're completely free to choose what style of play you wish to employ, whether it be attacking or defensive.
With regards to the signings, the board want you to sign young players, that's it! Anybody 23 years old and under will do. This isn't a huge surprise given that Inter's history, buying foreign has always been in the club's philosophy.
For the competitions, the goals are reasonable for your first season. The Inter board is expecting you to qualify for the Champions League, which means top four finish, very achievable given the squad you have.
Reaching the quarter-finals of the Champions League, though, will be tough. It's not impossible, it largely depends on the draw you get for the first knockout round, as you can get one of the European giants at that stage, even if you win your group. The Coppa Italia isn't regarded as important by the club.
Going further forward, the club want you to compete for the Serie A title in your second season before winning the league in your third. Not easy, but the board is ambitious, which is good when it comes to your transfer budget, they'll be willing to invest if you request it.
Tactical style & formation
MODERN CLASSIC: Inter Milan are best lining up in one of the most successful formations of modern football.
gone are the days of Mourinho ball at Inter, the Italian giants are now one of
the most exciting footballing sides in Europe. You'd benefit from emulating
Conte's tactics too, as the players at your disposal work best in a more fluid
Vertical Tiki Taka is the best of the recommended tactics but only against equal and inferior opposition. Wing play and fluid counter-attack are also recommended and the latter is a good tactic against the very best sides.
4-4-2 diamond narrow is the recommended formation but 4-2-4 Wide is best for the players you have. It's adventurous but it's definitely usable against most Serie A sides.
A three at the back formation is also an option, Conte used this to great effect at Chelsea, but it's difficult to find a good attacking midfielder to play since Christian Eriksen is yet to be updated into your side.
starting XI is Samir Handanovic in
goal, with a back four of Kwadwo
Asamoah, Diego Godin, Milan Skriniar and Danilo D'Ambrosio.
defensive midfielders should be Stefano
Sensi and Marcelo Brozovic. Alexis
Sanchez and Antonio Candreva are your two wingers that will provide service
to Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez who
will play as your striking pair.
twelve on the bench should be Vladan Dekic, Daniele Padelli, Stefan de Vrij,
Matias Vecino, Valentino Lazaro, Cristiano Biraghi, Matteo Politano, Nicolo
Barella, Roberto Gagliardini, Broja Valero, Alessandro Bastoni and Andrea
Inter's board have invested heavily in the side and made some quality loan and permanent signings. Conte's upheaval of the squad has done wonders for its fortunes, as two of the top five alone are new arrivals at the San Siro.
|Milan Skriniar||D (C)||24||164/171||18 determination, 18 natural fitness, 17 tackling|
|Diego Godin||D (C)||33||160/169||18 heading, 18 bravery, 18 leadership|
|Samir Handanovi||GK||34||160/164||19 reflexes, 17 natural fitness, 17 one on ones|
|Romelu Lukaku||ST||26||159/162||19 balance, 19 strength, 18 pace|
|Stefan de Vrij||D (C)||27||158/162||17 marking, 17 anticipation, 16 work rate|
from Lukaku, all of Inter's top players are defensive, with three being
centre-backs and the other the goalkeeper. Looking at this, it's clear where
you need to invest, as the midfield is lacking behind the attack and defence.
of these players are near or at their peak, with the possible exception of
Diego Godin, whose probably in the twilight of his career now.
Inter has produced some fantastic footballing talents over the years. Whether they're from the youth academy or plucked up foreign teenagers, their scouting team has always had a great eye for quality.
To comply with the board's requests, you'll have to make use of your academy and buy from around the world. There are already some great future stars on the books though, with these three being the best of the bunch.
Sebastiano Esposito – CA 2 star (110), PA 4 star (150-180)
SWEET SIXTEEN: Esposito is alreadt a good striker despite his tender age.
Sebastian Esposito is a decent striker at the start of FM20, having a CA of 110 but then you realise that he's only 16 years old! If you can, loan him out to a Serie C or B side so he can get regular football, or allow him to spend time in the under-18s and under-21s.
Esposito is so young that he can be molded into a different role than his currently favoured advanced forward and poacher. Furthermore, Esposito can be trained to also play on either wing.
With a maximum PA of 180, he could become one of the best strikers in the world once he reaches his peak. You'll have a job on to keep this Italian hot shot at your club.
Andrea Pinamonti– CA 2.5 star (133), PA 3.5 star (140-170)
MARKSMAN: Pinamonti has huge potential and is already a good goalscorer.
Andrea Pinamonti could find himself earning a few appearances in the Coppa Italia in your first season, as the Italian striker is already at the ability level to play regularly in some Serie A sides.
Pinamonti is on loan at Genoa during your first season and could be ready for first team football when he returns to the San Siro in summer 2020. You'd probably be wise to give the 20-year-old game time out on loan though, as Lukaku, Icardi and Martinez will make it difficult for him to force an entry.
With stats like his 15 finishing, 14 heading, 14 acceleration and 12 long shots though, he's already good enough to warrant some game time.
Alessandro Bastoni – CA 2.5 star (129), PA 3.5 star (140-170)
THE NEW CANNAVARO: Batoni has huge potential and could become the next great Italian defender.
Alessandro Bastoni has the physique and footballing brain to become a top Serie A defender in five years or less. Bastoni isn't quite there yet though, so it might be worth loaning the Italian out to another Serie A or Serie B side, after a successful spell at Parma the previous season.
Bastoni stands 6'3'' and already possesses great defensive stats such as 15 heading, 16 jumping reach, 14 strength and 14 positioning, all of which will improve.
STEADY GROWTH: Inter's financial projections are very encouraging,
Starting transfer budget: £30 million
Remaining wage budget: £101,000 a week
Substantial and sustainable growth is what every business needs to thrive and football clubs are no exception to this rule. Inter Milan fall into that category, their projections look very promising for the short term and that shouldn't change.
club's total expenditure and wage costs are expected to increase over the next
three years but the overall turnover is too. This means that Inter's bank
balance is set to increase from around £50m at the start of your save to over
£450m by the end of 2021-22.
transfer budget available to you is also meant to boom, from around £50m at the
start of your save to over £100m by summer 2022.
With £30m in the bank, you're not short of options for new players. The weakest area of the squad is the attacking midfielder centre (AMC), as there isn't a player that's in the first team that can play there naturally.
If you buy a good attacking midfielder, you can play the 3-5-2 formation that Conte has used to devastating effect in Serie A.
MIRRORING REALITY: Eriksen is simply the best player you can buy too improve your side.
At £67m in estimated value, Christian Eriksen is well over-budget for Inter at the start of the game but all hope is far from lost. As his contract expires in the upcoming summer, you can get the great Dane on a free transfer as long as he doesn't sign a new deal with Spurs.
Eriksen is one of the most talented players in the game, having great stats when it comes to creating opportunities.
If Eriksen isn't avaialble to get on a Bosman, these other players instead:
|Jack Grealish||23||Aston Villa||England||141/160||£26m||£60k|
|Donny van de Beek||22||Ajax||Holland||144/159||£23m||£3.4k|
Perisic, Icardi and Nainggolan all return to the side after your first season, so these areas of the team don't need to be improved as urgently as it might seem. The area that needs to be strengthened the most is probably the right midfield.
You also need a better back-up goalkeeper, as Dukic isn't good enough yet and both Padelli and Berni are old and will likely leave after your first season. With a budget of £100m, you've got plenty of space to tinker.
It's very optimistic, but Wilfried Zaha, Serge Gnabry and Kinglsey Coman are the calibre of players you should be aiming for if you want to join the top sides again. They'll all set you back at least £70m though, so be prepared to get the checkbook out.
Good back-up goalkeepers to consider would be the likes of Emil Audero, Pierluigi Gollini and Simone Scuffet. They're all cheap, young and Italian.
PRECARIOUS: You've got a lot of work to complete in the coming seasons as Inter boss with these contracts crossroads.
contract situation is on a knife edge going forward at the start of FM20. A
raft of players' deals expire within your first two seasons, so the majority of
your negatiations will be with your current players about keeping them in blue
There aren't too many big names who will leave if not offered a new deal after one season but Borja Valero is the pick of the bunch. At 34 though, it's probably time to say goodbye as he's an average quality player in your squad and won't be improving.
In addition, the loan deals for Biraghi and Sanchez all end in summer 2020. However, Mauro Icardi, Radja Naingollan and Gabriel Barbosa all return to the club after their loan deals end.
At the end of 2020-21, the contracts for Icadi, Candreva, Naingollan, Handanovic, D'Ambrosio, Rannocchia and Asamoah all expire. There's a mixed bag here, some are worth keeping, while others need replacing and there's a few that should be based on their performances.
Getting rid of the Old Lady
Nobody in Italy needs reminding of how dominant Juventus have been. The Bianconerri have won the last eight Serie A titles and have rarely been challenged in that time. Given the levels of their finances and the quality of their players, Juve are still the strong favourites.
Napoli and AC Milan are desperate to end the Old Lady's streak but If anybody
can do it, it's Inter Milan. Antonio Conte was the one who won Juve their first
Serie A title after the Calciopoli scandal and has already assembled an Inter
squad good enough for the challenge for you to use.
The board has set you a target of winning the league by the end of your third season in charge and you could get there by the end of your second. It won't be easy as Juve have one of the best squads in Europe at their disposal and there are other good teams ready to pounce if the Turin club slip.
If you keep your cool and sign some of the players we suggested in the next few transfer windows, you'll be in with a good shout of Inter winning their first title in ten years!
Full Inter player ratings
|Samir Handanovi||34||GK||SK||Defend||3.5 star||160/164|
|Danilo D'Ambrossio||30||D (RLC), WB/M (RL)||FB||Defend||3 star||146/148|
|Diego Godin||33||D (C)||CD||Stopper||3.5 star||160/169|
|Milan Skriniar||24||D (C)||BPD||Defend||4 star||164/171|
|Kwadwo Asamoah||30||D/WB (L), M (LC)||WB||Defend||3 star||147/159|
|Marcelo Brozovic||26||DM, M/AM (C)||BBM||Support||4 star||157/162|
|Stefano Sensi||23||DM, M (C)||AP||Support||3.5 star||149/164|
|Antonio Candreva||32||WB/M/AM (R)||WB||Attack||3 star||140/158|
|Alexis Sanchez||30||AM (RLC), ST||IW||Support||3 star||149/182|
|Romelu Lukaku||26||ST||TM||Support||3.5 star||159/162|
|Lautaro Martinez||21||ST||AF||Attack||3.5 star||154/175|
|Substitutes & Reserves|
|Vladan Dekic||19||GK||SK||Defend||1.5 star||90/120-150|
|Stefan de Vrij||27||D (C)||BPD||Defend||3.5 star||158/162|
|Matias Vecino||27||DM, M (C)||BBM||Support||3 star||145/153|
|Daniele Padelli||33||GK||SK||Defend||2 star||124/140|
|Valentino Lazaro||23||D/WB/M/AM (R)||WB||Support||3 star||144/153|
|Cristiano Biraghi||26||D/WB/M (L)||FB||Support||2.5 star||139/145|
|Matteo Politano||25||M (R), AM (RC), ST||IW||Support||3 star||149/158|
|Nicolo Barella||22||M/AM (C)||BBM||Support||3 star||149/172|
|Roberto Gagliardini||25||DM, M (C)||BBM||Support||3 star||143/155|
|Borja Valero||34||M/AM (C)||DLP||Support||3 star||140/158|
|Alessandro Bastoni||20||D (C)||CD||Defend||2.5 star||129/140-170|
|Andrea Rannochia||31||D (C)||CD||Defend||2.5 star||133/150|
|Tommaso Berni||36||GK||SK||Defend||1.5 star||102/128|
|Federico Dimarco||21||D/WB/M (L)||FB||Defend||2 star||123/148|