Inter favorites from Serie A? It’s a seven-team battle for the Scudetto, insists Conte

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Inter head coach Antonio Conte is convinced that there are seven teams vying for the Serie A title and a top four spot as he insisted the Nerazzurri are not the Scudetto’s favorites.

Inter de Conte are second and three points behind Milan, but are full of confidence after eclipsing the nine-time champions Juventus 2-0 last week.

Inter edged out Juve at the San Siro to enhance their title credentials in Italy, where they have not won the Scudetto since their treble campaign in 2009-10.

But Conte ruled out the favorites tag, with Napoli, Roma, Juve, Atalanta and Lazio also vying for silver and a Champions League spot.

“I always said from the beginning of the season that I see seven teams fighting for the first four positions, either for the Scudetto or for a place in the next Champions League,” Conte said before Saturday’s game away from Udinese.

“I think the first half of the season confirmed my opinion. We have seen that some teams are more consistent than others, but in the end this first round of Serie A confirmed that there are seven teams that can play for the title until the end of the season.

Inter have won nine of their last 11 Serie A games against Udinese (D1 L1) and haven’t conceded a goal in the last five against the club.

The Nerazzurri have scored 45 goals in their first 18 league games this season; Only Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich have scored more (48) in the top five European leagues in 2020-21.

In a 20-team season, only in 1951-52 did the Nerazzurri score more in the first half of the season (48).

Meanwhile, among the coaches who have led Inter for at least 30 Serie A matches in the era of three points per win, Conte has the best average points per game together (2.18 per game, on par by José Mourinho).

A delicious Coppa Italia quarter-final derby against neighboring Milan looms on Tuesday, but Conte said: “Our approach and our choices are only based on Udinese at the moment. The championship is too important [to make changes towards the derby] because in addition to the Scudetto you have a place in the next Champions League to fight for.

“The championship is our priority. We have to focus on Udinese and we have to face this game with the right mentality. After this game we are going to think about the next one but today Udinese is our priority ”.

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