Inter Milan Striker Lautaro Martinez (2)
In his first derby, Lautaro Martinez made an instant impact and was a huge factor in Inter Milan pulling off the upset against their noisy neighbors. Since the absence and controversy of Marco icardi, the young Argentine Striker has risen to the occasion. For an Inter Milan player, there is no bigger occasion then the derby maladonna. He was the leader and the driving force behind Inter Milan’s improbable upset against red hot AC Milan. He did not make an appearance in the first derby this season. During his debut in the Milan Derby, he scored a very important goal. He put together one of the most impressive performances this week. Inter ended up carving open AC Milan in the opening 5 minutes to take a very early lead. However, the opening goal would not have been possible without the incredible header by Martinez. After a cross coming in by Ivan perisic, the young Martinez put his head through a ball putting it in the exact right place at the right time. His movement and connection with the ball force one of the best goalkeepers in the world Gigi donnarumma to look completely disoriented leaving no chance as Inter scored the opener. He was incredibly effective throughout the match getting into good spaces and trying to play Marco icardi’s role. We saw significant differences between the two. Marco icardi might be one of the most clinical finishers in the history of Italian football but he takes very little touches prior to getting into goalscoring opportunities. Martinez is more of an all-around player and we saw that in terms of his passing ability and its ability to finish. He doesn’t take a ton of touches but he takes a significantly more touch then Marco icardi you can see his impact on the game throughout it. He had a performance to remember in the derby that is the highest order for an Inter Milan player and he completely delivered on what was asked of him. He put the opening goal on a plate for Vencio. In the second half inter was given a penalty with a 2-1 lead with the possibility to kill off the game. A young Martinez picked up the ball and beats donnarumma as inter took a lead that they would hold onto for the remainder of the match. It proved to be especially important because AC Milan ended up getting another goal back before the match conclusion. Overall it was a very exciting performance for the young striker. Even proves that maybe Marco icardi isn’t as needed as many may suggest. Top performance and one of football’s best Derbies by one of Inter Milan’s youngest players it was truly a remarkable performance.
Napoli Winger Dries Mertens (3)
Dries Mertens makes a long-awaited return to the list after being named twice during the first half of the Season he’s back. He was absolutely superb against Udinese. Easily the best performer on the pitch throughout the 90 minutes. His passing was absolutely superb as he controlled the pace of the game and was the most dangerous player getting into space finding teammates as well as creating his own opportunities not to mention his work-rate was absolutely incredible. Napoli got off and running to a 2-0 lead thanks to dries Mertens incredible service assisting the opening two goals of the match for Napoli. One of the most underrated players in Italian football his impact on the game could not have been any more obvious. He was responsible for three of the four goals scored. The relegation side fought their way back into the match with two goals keeping things level at half-time. I’ve been saying this a long time late in the year teams in threat of relegation are the hardest games of the season. They are looking for blood and any amount of points they can get and they’ll do almost anything to achieve that. Udin was right there. Eventually dries Mertens helped Napoli breakaway in the second half. He gave continuous service to teammates while working really hard for the team to put them back in front. Napoli eventually Retook a 3-2 lead. Udinese had the desire and still continue to play Strong football. After a two-assist performance for dries, Mertens Belgium effectively ended any chance of stolen points. He found the back of the net with a late goal that ended any chance of a comeback. The Belgium Striker has not scored as frequently as in past years but he has been a big part of Napoli success. Lorenzo Insigne has not been playing at his best lately and even though he’s not stealing the headlines dries Mertens has come up big when his team needs him the most. Statistically, he’s not going to blow you away but his impact and the way he plays the game certainly displays how good he is he had a truly remarkable performance this week and I could only see that continuing against Roma in two weeks time. He is one of the most underappreciated players in the league this weekend was another reminder that he is capable of performances like this. A top-class performance from a top-class player as he returns to the list after months of absence following a great display as he was the orchestrator of the Napoli attack in a truly epic match.
Lazio Midfielder Luiz Alberto
Luis Alberto was the dominating Force in Lazio’s 4-1 win over Parma. While Roma is struggling Lazio are making up ground even after dropping points last week Luis Alberto took over and put in a dominating performance against a strong Parma team that has taken points off of Juventus. He completely pulled the strings in the Lazio Midfield making light work for his teammates. As well as finding the back of the match himself in his own right. Parma is a good team with very good players and Luis Alberto single-handedly ripped them to shreds. He displayed pinpoint passing and his efficiency. His ability to create chances through the Midfield is absolutely astounding he is the orchestrator and the quarterback of the Midfield. He put together an astounding 7 key passes which are almost unheard. He led Lazio from the first kick of the ball to the end of the match. He wasn’t the biggest factor in the result a player as much as I don’t like the team he plays for he is nothing short of sensational he has been one of the best midfielders in Italian football over the last two and a half years and only continues to get better this season. He scored a penalty with poise and excellence and even added another goal on top of that just a little bit later. The sequence between the two goals essentially killed any chance of a comeback. They started strong they started hot and they just kept going. Lazio has a decent chance of finishing ahead of Roma for the first time and many years. Even has a decent shot at Champions League football after AC Milan Lost in the derby. That’s not to mention the fact that they have a game in hand meaning if they are to win that game they will go clear up Roma. Obviously, as much as I am hoping that doesn’t happen Luis Alberto continuous quality performances will help them in their Champions League fight. Luis Alberto is not a player we talk about a lot he doesn’t steal the headlines or is talked about very much in the media but he is one of the very best players in Italian football. After this week’s performance, his quality is not in question he’s unlikely to find his way on this list very often because we’re so infatuated with goals and assists but no question he is the leader of this Lazio team that is on the hunt for Champions League football.
DONKEY OF THE WEEK: A.S Roma
The donkey of the week goes to my club yet again Roma have failed to deliver against some of the bottom teams in Italian football. Changing the coach only was a temporary fix after their win last week they went right back to their inconsistent ways. They allowed a team who was winless in the last five to beat them. Spal completed the double against Roma. As great as they played that is an embarrassing thing to have on your resume. Champions League football seems to be escaping through their fingertips by the day. The fact of the matter is if they fail to get Champions League some stars will walk out the door. As much as I did not want to give the donkey the week to them after their performance this week I didn’t have a choice. They created next to nothing and their execution was as poor as it has been this season. You can break this down every however you want this team is playing significantly under their expectations this is a demanding Club and if you’re unable to deliver those cheers will turn into Boos very quickly. Roma simply put we’re not good enough despite having the better players and the stronger team they fell on their face to another bottom tier side spal won’t be relegated but over the last month, they have been the single worst team in Italian football. This needs to fix this as soon as possible because they’re heading further away from the Champions League rather than closing on it to it they had the opportunity to make up some ground in the Champions League race Milan dropping points once again they failed to come through in a match they needed to.