MILAN - Just one game left until the end of the season: matchday 38 marks the final league game of the campaign for Inter, as they face Atalanta away on Saturday 1 August (20:45 CEST kick-off) in a match that will help decide second, third and fourth place. Inter currently sit in second place on 79 points, one ahead of Atalanta and Lazio. Lazio will also be playing on Saturday night away to Napoli.
In the event that two teams are level on points, the order of criteria to decide the rankings are as follows: points won head-to-head; goal difference head-to-head; goal difference overall; total goals scored overall; random draw.
In the reverse fixture at San Siro, Inter vs. Atalanta ended in a 1-1 draw. In their direct encounters with Lazio, the Nerazzurri won their home fixture 1-0 and lost 2-1 away. In the event that Inter should finish on the same number of points as the Biancocelesti, it would come down to overall goal difference. The goal difference of the three teams is currently as follows: Inter +43, Atalanta +52, Lazio +39. Atalanta hold a better head-to-head record from their fixtures against Lazio this season.
ATALANTA VS. INTER, HEAD-TO-HEAD AND PAST RESULTS
This will be the 118th meeting between the two sides in Serie A: Inter hold the better record with 62 wins, 31 draws and 24 losses, Inter scoring 208 and conceding 112 along the way. Three of the last four meetings between the two sides in Serie A have ended in draws, two of these without goals and Inter not winning any of their last four (3D, 1L).
In recent years, Bergamo has proved a tough place for Inter to play, with Atalanta unbeaten in nine of Inter’s last ten trips to their home stadium in Serie A (4W, 5D). However, five of Inter’s seven visits prior to this ended in Nerazzurri success (2D).
For just the second time in their history, Inter have won at least twelve away games in a single Serie A season, the last time coming in 2006/07 (15 away wins). They could become just the second side ever to hit 13 away wins in a campaign and not win the title (after Napoli in 2016/17 and 2017/18).
Inter have kept a clean sheet in all of their last three outings, having not gone four league games without conceding since April 2018. The last time a side coached by Antonio Conte managed this feat came in December 2017 (with Chelsea in the Premier League).
Atalanta come into this game off the back of seven consecutive home wins in Serie A, with the chance to set their all-time record for consecutive home wins in the Italian top flight. Gasperini’s side have also scored 98 goals this league campaign and could become just the fifth side in Serie A history to hit the 100-goal mark in a single season after Torino, Juventus, AC Milan and Inter (all between 1947 and 1951).
“La Dea” have managed to score in all of their last 13 league games at home, having only ever scored in 14 in a row at home in one Serie A season with Marcello Lippi at the helm in 1992/93. What’s more, Atalanta have scored 51 goals at home this league campaign, the last team to do better in a single Serie A season was Juventus with 52 back in 1960/61.
GENERAL STATISTICS: THE BEST DEFENCE AGAINST THE BEST ATTACK
This could be the first time since 2003/04 (AC Milan in that case) that Serie A has been won by a side with neither the best attack nor the best defence, with Saturday’s match-up between the two sides with these titles so far: Atalanta (98 goals scored) and Inter (36 goals conceded). This would also be the first time since 2006/07 that the Scudetto was won by a side who didn’t also have the best defence in the league.
Inter could finish this Serie A season with two players on more than 15 goals for the first time since 1958/59, when Angelillo and Firmani both beat this figure (right now, Lautaro Martínez sits on 14 and Romelu Lukaku has scored 23).
Saturday’s game will be between two of the top three sides to have held a lead for the highest number of minutes this season: Inter (1st, 1,571) and Atalanta (3rd, 1,207), with Juventus in between. Inter (19) and Atalanta (14) are the two teams to have scored the most headers in Serie A this season.
Atalanta could become the first team in Serie A history to finish a season without a single Italian goalscorer (excluding own goals).
Romelu Lukaku has scored 15 goals away from home in Serie A this season: only two players have managed to do better in a single season in the Italian top flight: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (in 2011/12) and Ciro Immobile (in 2017/18 and the current campaign) with 16.
Lautaro Martínez’s last five goals in the league were scored at San Siro, whereas six of his nine goals prior to this came on the road. The last time that the Argentine found the net away from home was on 6 January against Napoli.
Roberto Gagliardini’s first 14 Serie A appearances came for Atalanta prior to his move to Inter in January 2017. If he plays, it will be the Italian’s 100th appearance for Inter in all competitions.
Alessandro Bastoni also played his first seven Serie A matches for Atalanta between 2017 and 2018.
Luis Muriel (18) and Duvan Zapata (18) are the most prolific duo in Atalanta’s history when it comes to goals scored in a single Serie A season.
Alejandro Gómez has provided 16 assists this season. Only two South American players have set up their teammates to score on more occasions in the Top Five European leagues over the past ten years: Lionel Messi (21 this season; 18 in 2010/11 and 2014/15) and Ángel Di María (17 in 2013/14 and 18 in 2015/16).
No defender has done better than Robin Gosens in the Top Five European leagues this season when it comes to goal contributions: he’s level with Trent Alexander-Arnold on 17. Gosens has scored eight and provided nine assists. There has never been a defender who has done better in a single season since Opta started collecting data on the aforementioned leagues (2006/07). Ruslan Malinovskiy has bagged the most goals from outside the box in the Top Five European leagues in 2020 (five).
Antonio Conte is unbeaten in seven clashes against Atalanta as a coach in Serie A, winning six and drawing one of those games. The Inter boss’s coaching career in the Italian top flight began with the team from Bergamo in 2009/10 (13 matches: three wins, four draws, six defeats). Conte is yet to taste defeat against Gasperini after winning on three occasions and drawing once.
Gian Piero Gasperini was in charge of Inter for three matches in Serie A between August and September 2011 (one draw, two defeats). Gasperini has remained unbeaten in eleven of his 20 encounters with Inter as a coach in Serie A (five wins, six draws).
ONE BOOKING AWAY FROM SUSPENSION
Atalanta: Castagne, Djimsiti.
Inter: de Vrij, Valero, Vecino.