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Inter thrash Genoa to make impressive start to title defence

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Inter opened their Serie A title defence in commanding style by thrashing Genoa at the San Siro.

Milan Skriniar settled nerves with a sixth-minute header to give new boss Simone Inzaghi the ideal start.

Summer signing Hakan Calhanoglu swept home a stunning second minutes later after Edin Dzeko’s clever lay-off.

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Arturo Vidal and Dzeko then scored second-half goals for the champions, who were irresistible and look set to challenge again this season.

It has been a difficult summer for Inter, the joy of a first Scudetto for 11 years was followed by the high-profile departures of manager Antonio Conte and star striker Romelu Lukaku.

Conte’s champions were built on a rugged defence and clinical finishing on the counter but early signs suggest Inzaghi will take a different approach.

On this evidence, his Inter will seek to dominate possession and create space with electric movement – something they achieved impressively throughout.

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Turkish playmaker Calhanoglu is a steal after controversially joining on a free transfer from city rivals Milan and he ran the game, an offside flag denying him a second goal on debut.

Fellow new boy Dzeko hit the bar on his 200th Serie A appearance before scoring a trademark headed goal late on while Ivan Perisic also had a strike ruled out for offside.

Gaps did appear in the Inter defence at times and Genoa striker Yayah Kallon ought to have done better than drag two decent chances wide.

Even so, with forward Lautaro Martinez still to return to the side following suspension, the title holders appear to have the armoury to compete on multiple fronts this year.

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