Even without Romelu Lukaku and Antonio Conte, Inter Milan are intent on successfully defending their Serie A title. The Nerazuri extended their unbeaten start in the Italian league with a 6-1 win over Bologna on Saturday.
Substitute Edin Deco scored two goals late when Lautaro Martinez, Milan Scrianar, Nicolo Barella and Matias Vesino gave the hosts a four-goal cushion.
Arthur Thiet pulled one back for Bologna four minutes out of time.
The win provided some welcome respite for Inter after two disappointing performances: a draw at Sampdoria last weekend and a home loss to Real Madrid in the Champions League.
Inter moved up the standings, one point above Roma, AC Milan, Napoli – who have yet to play this weekend – and Fiorentina, who previously won 2-1 in Genoa.
There were concerns about Inter’s situation after Conte surprisingly left the team in May, soon after leading the club to its first Italian league title in more than a decade.
Conte was openly concerned about Inter’s lack of input into the Chinese owners’ finances and transfer market, and his concerns were confirmed when Lukaku was sold to Chelsea for $135 million in August, a move for the European champions. There was a record transfer fee.
Lukaku scored 64 goals in 95 appearances in all competitions in his two seasons at Inter.
But under new coach Simone Inzaghi, Inter have had no trouble losing goals to Lukaku so far.
With 15 goals in four matches, Inter have the most productive attack in the league.
Lautaro started things off by redirecting a cross from Denzel Dumfries against Bologna for his fourth goal in six minutes at the San Siro in as many matches.
Screenier then rose unopposed to meet a corner with an on-target header at the half-hour mark and four minutes later Barela finished off another devastating counterattack.
After the break, Vesino scored with a tap-in, then Deco scored his first goal through the goalkeeper’s legs and fired from a sharp angle for his second.