Inter are unlikely to seek a January replacement for injured loanee Alexis Sanchez, according to chief executive Giuseppe Marotta.

The Chile forward underwent surgery in midweek after his injuring his left ankle on international duty.

Sanchez, 30, could be out for up to three months but Marotta believes Antonio Conte's squad is deep enough to handle his absence.

Inter did not miss the Manchester United misfit in Sunday's thrilling 4-3 victory over Sassuolo, secured courtesy of braces from Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez.

"The January market is available to the club but the strongest players aren't available for moves in that window," Marotta told DAZN.

"We'll be alert to examine any potential opportunities. We have a competitive squad. Obviously we'd be happier without the Sanchez injury but we're optimistic.

"When Alexis comes back the attacking set-up will remain unchanged."

Lukaku and Martinez starred as Inter ran riot for over 70 minutes at Mapei Stadium.

The visitors were three goals clear and cruising before Filip Djuricic poked in Sassuolo's second goal in the 74th minute.

Fellow substitute Jeremie Boga reduced the margin back to one and the Nerazzurri had to survive a nervy finish to secure their seventh win in eight Serie A matches.

Antonio Conte battled a fever before the game and left it to his assistant, Cristian Stellini, to explain the "blackout" that put three points in jeopardy.

"We lost the ball twice and they caught us by surprise when breaking quickly," he said.

"It was too easy for them to score. We've still got a long way to go and working on situations like this is the most important thing for us."

Stellini added: "Antonio is slightly worn out, he had a bit of a fever before the match. He gave his all so he could lead the team, as he always does over the course of the 90 minutes.

"Thankfully he wasn't kept away from the bench but he's feeling the effects again now."

Stellini said Stefano Sensi, who missed the match with a thigh injury, would be assessed on Monday ahead of the Champions League game against Borussia Dortmund.

Inter forward Alexis Sanchez has undergone successful surgery on his injured left ankle, the Serie A club have confirmed.

Sanchez was substituted late in Chile's friendly win over Colombia on Saturday, with a dislocated joint causing damage to his peroneus longus tendon.

The 30-year-old travelled to Barcelona on Wednesday for a consultation with professor Ramon Cugat and it was decided the issue should be operated on.

A statement on Inter's official website read: "The visit [with Cugat] confirmed the diagnosis of the Inter medical staff and the decision was made to proceed with surgery on the left ankle.

"The operation was performed in the afternoon on the peroneus longus tendon and it went exactly as planned."

Sanchez, who joined Inter on a season-long loan from Manchester United in August, is expected to miss three months of action.

The ex-Arsenal star has made four appearances for Antonio Conte's side this term, scoring one goal in Serie A, though he was sent off later in the same match against Sampdoria.

Alexis Sanchez may require surgery after suffering an ankle tendon injury while on international duty with Chile, Inter have confirmed.

Chile coach Reinaldo Rueda had suggested Sanchez – who is on loan at Inter from Manchester United – could be set to miss "two to three months" after suffering an ankle injury in Saturday's friendly with Colombia.

The forward had further tests upon his return to Milan, with the results of those examinations confirming Sanchez has dislocated his ankle.

"Sanchez underwent medical tests earlier this morning at the Humanitas Institute in Rozzano," read a statement from Inter. 

"Results revealed a joint dislocation in his left ankle which has caused damage to the peroneus longus tendon."

Sanchez will now travel to Barcelona for consultations with professor Ramon Cugat, who has often treated injured Manchester City players, including Benjamin Mendy and Kevin De Bruyne, to determine whether an operation will be required.

Former Arsenal star Sanchez has made four appearances for Antonio Conte's side this term, scoring one goal in Serie A, though he was sent off later in that match against Sampdoria.

Alexis Sanchez could be sidelined for "two to three" months after sustaining a potentially serious ankle injury, according to Chile coach Reinaldo Rueda.

Sanchez was substituted late in Chile's goalless friendly draw with Colombia on Saturday after suffering what the Football Federation of Chile described as a "dislocation of left ankle peroneal tendons".

The forward, who is on loan at Inter from Manchester United, will undergo further tests in Milan, with Rueda suggesting he could be out of action for the foreseeable future if surgery is required.

"If the club operates, we could be without him for two to three months," he told a media conference. "It is a pity. He had been regaining form for his club and played in the Champions League.

"Now we have to wait for these crucial hours to know what decision the club will take."

Sanchez has scored one Serie A goal since leaving United for Inter, his sole strike coming in a win away to Sampdoria, during which he was sent off.

Colombia and Chile drew 0-0 in a boisterous friendly that saw heavy challenges flying between the South American rivals.

The result in Alicante mirrored the scoreline after 90 minutes of June's Copa America quarter-final, which Chile went on to win 5-4 on penalties, and it was clear neither side wanted to lose face in front of a lively crowd at Estadio Jose Rico Perez.

In the absence of James Rodriguez and Radamel Falcao, Colombia started with Duvan Zapata up front alongside Luis Muriel and Roger Martinez and looked the more dangerous side throughout.

Juan Cuadrado's 40-yard spring almost produced an early goal but he fired into the legs of Claudio Bravo after 16 minutes.

Colombia dominated the first half but Chile countered dangerously, with Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sanchez combining for a sweeping move that Barcelona man Vidal failed to finish off.

Cuadrado went down clutching his ankle after a scything challenge from Erick Pulgar in the box shortly after half-time but had his claims for a penalty dismissed by the referee.

A member of Carlos Queiroz's coaching staff was shown a red card after tempers spilled over on the Colombia bench, and four yellow cards were shown as the second half turned into a scrap.

One moment of quality from Colombia saw substitute Jefferson Lerma presented with a clear shooting chance from the edge of the box eight minutes from time, but his attempt was at a comfortable height for Bravo, who saved to ensure the scoresheet remained blank at the final whistle.

Aaron Ramsey warned Juventus need to be wary of the threat posed by his former Arsenal team-mate Alexis Sanchez when the Italian champions face Inter on Sunday.

Sanchez played alongside Ramsey for three-and-a-half seasons at Arsenal, where the pair enjoyed two FA Cup triumphs together, but they go head-to-head in a top-of-the-table-clash at San Siro.

Since joining Inter on loan from Manchester United in August, Sanchez has made three Serie A appearances and opened his goal-scoring account for the club in a 3-1 victory at Sampdoria.

Ramsey scored his first goal since his move from Arsenal to Juventus a week earlier, netting the Bianconeri's equaliser in a 2-1 win over Verona, and he said his side are braced for a tough challenge against the league leaders this weekend.

"Inter have improved this season," Ramsey told BBC Sport.

"Antonio Conte has got them really organised and they have yet to drop any points. It is going to be difficult.

"They have some great players, including one I know very well from my time at Arsenal. We will have to be aware of him and the other players they have and be really on top of our game to get the result we want."

 

Juventus have only dropped two points in Serie A this season but that leaves them trailing Inter who have won all six of their games under new coach Antonio Conte.

Ramsey indicated that he feels Juve will improve as they adapt to the methods and tactics being used by coach Maurizio Sarri, who took charge in June.

"It has been great so far," said Ramsey when asked about working under the former Chelsea coach.

"There have been new ideas and new information, which we are working hard to try to put into practice. At times it hasn't worked as well as we would have liked, but in other parts it really has.

"We are slowly getting better in terms of what he wants to implement and understanding our roles and responsibilities more.

"This club has been so good and so dominant for so long. We know other teams have improved and are trying to knock us off top spot. But this place is all about winning and that is what we are striving for."

Inter head coach Antonio Conte urged his players to take the intensity of their performances in Serie A into crunch games with Barcelona and Juventus.

Conte's side played virtually half of their 3-1 win over Sampdoria on Saturday with 10 men as they maintained their 100 per cent winning run.

Inter secured victory thanks to goals from Stefano Sensi, Alexis Sanchez and Roberto Gagliardini, while Jakub Jankto netted for Sampdoria.

Sanchez, on loan from Manchester United, had a particularly eventful game as he scored his first Inter goal and was then sent off a minute into the second half for a second bookable offence.

Inter are two points clear of Juventus at the top of Serie A after six straight victories and Conte wants to use that as a springboard as they head to Camp Nou before hosting the Italian champions at the weekend.

"We need to recover our energy to make an intense match so we can make it difficult for Barca," said Conte. "I do not have to tell you the opposition teams we are playing.

"If you want to put Barcelona in difficulty, you have to play an intense game but at the same time you have to be good at limiting and not letting them play, otherwise it becomes a problem.

"You also have to be good at dribbling and building. This beginning in the league is the result of so much work and a lot of willingness on the part of the boys."

The victory saw Conte equal Roberto Mancini's best start to a season, although he still needs two more wins to overtake legendary Inter head coach Helenio Herrera's record of seven in the 1966-67 season.

 

Alexis Sanchez scored before being sent off in a dramatic first Inter start as his side battled to a 3-1 away win over Sampdoria.

Inter made it six victories from six in Serie A, ensuring they kept the two-point lead over Juventus at the top of the table that they held at the start of Saturday.

Two goals in the space of 128 first-half seconds from Stefano Sensi and Sanchez had Antonio Conte's men on course for a dominant victory in response to Juve's earlier win over SPAL.

Sanchez received a second yellow for diving early in the second half and there was brief alarm for 10-man Inter when that was followed by a strike from Samp's Jakub Jankto, but Roberto Gagliardini wrapped up the points.

After a scrappy opening 20 minutes, Inter scored two goals in rapid succession.

First, in-form Sensi fired in an effort from 30 yards which struck Sanchez on the back and deflected past Emil Audero in the Sampdoria goal.

Then, on Inter's next attack, another Sensi strike that was hit less cleanly was latched on to by an opportunistic Sanchez, who knew more about this one as he pounced to slot in from inside the six-yard box.

Antonio Candreva's goal from a Sanchez chipped pass was ruled out for offside before Lautaro Martinez fired wide from one good chance and struck another straight at the keeper.

Audero denied Sensi as Inter ended the first half in complete control but the match took a dramatic twist 54 seconds after the restart. When a Martinez shot was saved, Sanchez went down under pressure from Julian Chabot, who appeared to back out of the challenge.

That immediately earned Sanchez a second booking – his first having come just before the break for a foul on Albin Ekdal.

Samp's first shot on target got them back into the match, Jankto collecting a pass from Karol Linetty before turning and finding the bottom corner with an angled left-footed strike – his first league goal for the club.

But just after the hour mark – six minutes after Jankto's strike - weak goalkeeping from Audero meant Marcelo Brozovic's over-hit pass was eventually parried into the path of Gagliardini to tap in.
 

What does it mean? Inter poised for pivotal week

Romelu Lukaku, Danilo D'Ambrosio and Nicolo Barella – who all came on after Jankto's goal - were rested by Conte along with Diego Godin ahead of a crucial week that sees Inter take on Barcelona and Juve in their two main competitions.

Sanchez's dramatic debut was the interesting talking point here, but the bigger picture is Inter's magnificent start domestically and another confident performance in a game they dominated despite playing half of it with 10 men.

Samp are bottom as the pressure grows on boss Eusebio Di Francesco.

Supreme Sensi shines again

Sensi already looks like one of the signings of the season. He continued his fine form here and ended with a stat line that read one goal, one assist and two key passes.

The midfielder also had another shot well saved just before the break and Conte took no risks with the match safe at 3-1 with 25 minutes to go, bringing Sensi off to keep him fresh for the key week ahead.

Martinez needs goals to keep starting spot

Martinez has impressed with his all-round play this season, but with Lukaku and Sanchez among Inter's attacking options he will want to improve his goalscoring rate to remain a prominent part of Conte's plans.

He had three excellent chances in this game but could not covert any of them, Audero denying him twice while another effort was fired wide. Martinez is undoubtedly an extremely promising player, but seven Serie A goals in 33 games is a record that needs to get better.

What's next?

It is a huge week for Inter, who are at Camp Nou on Wednesday for Champions League business before they meet Juve in the Derby d'Italia at San Siro on October 6.

Samp are in desperate need of points when they travel to Hellas Verona next Saturday.

Alexis Sanchez has been handed his first start for Inter in their Serie A clash with Sampdoria on Saturday.

Sanchez joined Inter on a season-long loan from Manchester United last month but has managed a combined total of just 17 minutes in two substitute appearances.

He lines up alongside Lautaro Martinez in attack, with Romelu Lukaku dropping to the bench.

Antonio Conte has made a host of changes from the side that beat Lazio in midweek, with Alessandro Bastoni, Antonio Candreva, Roberto Gagliardini, Stefano Sensi and Kwadwo Asamoah all coming into the starting XI.

Inter head coach Antonio Conte says the club are working hard to help Alexis Sanchez rediscover his golden touch.

Sanchez joined Inter on a season-long loan from Manchester United in a bid to revive his career after a substantial dip in form at Old Trafford, having previously impressed for Arsenal.

However, the Chile forward has managed a combined total of just 17 minutes in two substitute appearances for Inter this season.

Conte has promised Sanchez more game time in the near future as Inter seek to reinvigorate the 30-year-old's fortunes on the pitch.

"It is up to us to help him find the form and the brilliance he has lost a little," Conte told a news conference on Friday, ahead of Inter's match with Sampdoria.

"Alexis is a footballer who has certain characteristics. He is a tough player, and sooner or later you will see him on the pitch.

"Each of us has room for improvement. For some it will be a path that is more simple; for others more complex.

"We have room for improvement in everything and my job is to try to improve the players in all aspects.

"I am always very cautious; we need to improve in everything and do not think that it comes with the magic wand and everything improves."

Unbeaten Inter are top of Serie A having chalked up five straight victories, although Conte urged caution and warned his players not to let their intensity drop off.

"We've got five in a row and it's important, but we're just getting started," he said.

"We must continue with the same desire, trying to improve ourselves.

"If you want to be a protagonist and become a big and strong team, you need points, stability, certainties. We are trying to improve in this respect.

"We are not the first to win the first five games. This group was leader of the league two years ago and ended up in the Champions League only on the final day.

"Even with (Roberto) Mancini, it was like that. Good horses are only seen on arrival."

Inter maintained their 100 per cent record in Serie A as Antonio Conte's side recorded a 1-0 win over Lazio at San Siro on Wednesday.

The hosts, fresh from a 2-0 derby triumph over AC Milan at the weekend, opened the scoring with the first effort at goal when Danilo D'Ambrosio headed home after 23 minutes.

Lazio ought to have been level before the interval, with Joaquin Correa guilty of wasting two excellent opportunities against an in-form Samir Handanovic.

The second-half introduction of Ciro Immobile, benched after his adverse reaction at being substituted in the 2-0 win over Parma on Sunday, failed to prompt a Lazio comeback.

Conte's men have now won five from five to mark themselves out as the most likely challengers to Juventus' top-flight supremacy.

Inter dominated possession from the start but it was the visitors who threatened first. 

Felipe Caicedo ran into the penalty area but his heavy touch allowed the alert Handanovic - making his 300th appearance in all competitions for the Nerazzurri - to clean up the loose ball.

When the first attempt finally arrived it found the back of the net, D'Ambrosio leaping above Jony to nod in Cristiano Biraghi's cross.

Lazio sought a swift response and forced Handanovic into a superb save to tip Correa's curling strike over the crossbar.

With the game suddenly stretched, Romelu Lukaku drilled narrowly wide and Correa fluffed his lines when clean through on goal.

Handanovic again came to Inter's rescue with a reflex save from Correa's close-range shot to ensure his team were ahead at the break.

Correa was soon at it again in the second half, jumping to head a corner wide from just six yards, and Simone Inzaghi could wait no longer to bring on Immobile.

A fine double save from Thomas Strakosha, denying first Nicolo Barella then Matteo Politano, kept Lazio in the contest before the hour mark, while substitute Lautaro Martinez fired narrowly wide in added time.

Yet despite those reprieves, Inzaghi's side were unable to find an equaliser to put an end to Inter's perfect start to the Serie A season.

 

What does it mean? Inter have the stomach for a title tussle

Following a derby win over their city rivals, Inter could have fallen victim to a touch of complacency in this match. However, Conte's team produced another impressive showing, combining defensive solidity – they have still only conceded one league goal this term – with a calm and measured approach on the ball.

They face Juve early next month in what is shaping up to be an intriguing contest. 

A big hand for super Samir

That Inter kept their excellent defensive record intact was in large part down to Handanovic. On several occasions it was solely the Slovenian who stood between Lazio and a goal that would have changed the course of the game.

You must be Joaquin!

Creating chances was not really Lazio's problem; they had enough in the first half alone to have seriously troubled their opponents. Correa was more culpable than anyone in their failure to make a breakthrough. A little composure could have made a big difference.

What's next?

Both sides are in domestic action at the weekend before a return to continental competition, with Inter off to Sampdoria and then Barcelona, while Lazio have back-to-back home games against Genoa and Rennes.

Alexis Sanchez is still not ready to start for Inter, according to coach Antonio Conte.

Sanchez has made one brief substitute appearance in Serie A since joining Inter on loan from Manchester United.

The Chile international did not have a full pre-season with United due to a hamstring injury sustained at the Copa America.

With Inter top of Serie A and yet to drop a point, Conte is in no rush to push Sanchez into his side.

"For him it is worth the words I give for everyone else," he said ahead of Wednesday's home game against Lazio.

"When I see ready players, they will be inserted [into the XI].

"I have to work in the interest of Inter, not of individuals."

While Sanchez has made a slow start at San Siro, ex-United team-mate Romelu Lukaku is thriving.

The Belgium international has hit three goals in four Serie A games to fire the Nerazzurri to a perfect record.

Conte tried to take Lukaku to Chelsea earlier in his career, but the Italian opted against adding to his previous praise for the striker.

"Of Lukaku, I have said far and wide what I think, it seems to me superfluous to repeat it again," Conte added.

"For the midfielders, on the other hand, I am happy: beyond those who score, the more arrows we have available to our bow, the better.

"But even in the past, this is a department that has always played a fairly important and decisive role in my teams.

"When you start a new project, the hope is that it is long and lasting. The more you stay in a club, the more it means that your ideas are being assimilated.

"Surely for a coach to stay long is the best thing. I've never been able to coach the same team for more than three years, and change means starting from scratch.

"It's not easy, because you have to find people who can support you in every context."

Antonio Conte has called on Inter to be more clinical after they only managed a 1-0 victory over 10-man Udinese on Saturday.

Inter moved to the top of Serie A, two points clear of Juventus, as their third win in as many matches was secured by Stefano Sensi's first-half header.

Sensi's goal followed Rodrigo De Paul being shown a red card, after referee Maurizio Mariani reviewed footage of him striking Antonio Candreva on the head away from the ball.

Romelu Lukaku failed to have a single shot at goal, while Alexis Sanchez was brought on for his debut with just 10 minutes remaining as the Nerazzurri scraped through.

"I congratulated the lads because it was a very difficult match against a strong team and these three points are important. We deserved them but must also recognise Udinese did well to stay in the game until the end," Conte told DAZN.

"We should've been more clinical and finished it off earlier, but instead we were always just hanging on.

"We know we have to fight. I read too much rubbish in the papers. We must go our own way without thinking about anything or anyone else. The truth is nothing is easy and we will never take anything for granted.

"I had warned the players that Udinese would take a very defensive approach and we had to be careful on counter-attacks. We've got to start moves from the back and we achieved that against a team that will cause problems for many opponents this season.

"We've got a long road ahead of us, we have a lot of work to do and won't get caught up in the euphoria, we are laying the groundwork. We want to be a tough team."

Stefano Sensi's goal was the difference as Inter retained their 100 per cent record in Serie A by comfortably beating 10-man Udinese 1-0 on Alexis Sanchez's debut at San Siro.

A nine-minute spell before half-time proved decisive as Rodrigo de Paul was shown a red card for striking Antonio Candreva on the head following the intervention of VAR and Sensi nodded Inter ahead.

Romelu Lukaku endured a disappointing outing and made way for Lautaro Martinez in the 65th minute, before Sanchez replaced Matteo Politano to make his first appearance for the Nerazzurri against one of the forward's former clubs.

While Inter were unable add to their tally, they had already done enough to pick up a third straight win under Antonio Conte and move two points clear of Juventus at the top of the table.

Politano went close to putting Inter ahead in the fourth minute when his low drive from 25 yards struck the outside of the post.

Sensi saw a fine volley from the edge of the box pushed aside by Udinese goalkeeper Juan Musso, before Walace was kept out by Samir Handanovic at the other end.

Udinese were reduced to 10 men after 35 minutes when De Paul was shown a red card after referee Maurizio Mariani reviewed footage of his retaliation to Candreva appearing to touch his face.

Inter took advantage a minute before half-time, Sensi getting across Rodrigo Becao and heading a fine delivery from Diego Godin – making his first start since joining from Atletico Madrid – in off the underside of the crossbar.

Kevin Lasagna overpowered Godin but was thwarted by Handanovic, before Musso denied Politano and Roberto Gagliardini – a half-time replacement for Nicolo Barella – before the hour mark.

After Musso kept out a Sensi free-kick, an awkward fall for Politano paved the way for Sanchez to enter the fray to a great ovation with 10 minutes remaining.

Sanchez went close to marking his debut with a goal when Candreva's square pass fell to him in the six-yard box, but a scrambling Musso kept him at bay and Inter coasted to the final whistle.
 

What does it mean? Advantage Inter

With Juventus held to a 0-0 draw at Fiorentina earlier on Saturday, Inter opened up a gap over the reigning champions at the top of the table.

There is still a long way to go, but they are the only team to possess a 100 per cent record after playing three matches, though Torino could join them by beating Lecce on Monday.

Sensational Sensi

Lukaku and Sanchez were the headline arrivals at San Siro this season but Sensi continued to show he is a valuable addition. The midfielder, on loan from Sassuolo, provided great support to the strikers and took his goal brilliantly.

Lukaku off the boil

After scoring in each of his first two matches and finding the net for Belgium during the international break, Lukaku failed to get into the action in Milan. He had no shots, created no chances and had a passing accuracy of 61.1 per cent in a disappointing outing.

What's next?

Inter will be in Champions League action at home to Slavia Prague on Tuesday, while Udinese are not in action until the visit of Brescia next Saturday.

Antonio Conte has pledged Inter will help Alexis Sanchez recapture his best form.

Sanchez has joined the Nerazzurri on loan after losing his way at Manchester United, where he scored three goals in 32 Premier League appearances.

The Chile forward, described by former United boss Jose Mourinho as a "sad man" this week, is in line to make his Inter debut in Saturday's Serie A game at home to Udinese with Conte expectant over the 30-year-old.

"Sanchez is a strong player, he has shown in the past the quality that he possesses," Conte told reporters.

"We need to help him recapture the form that he lost at Manchester United. He has to adapt to our game and that is what he is doing."

Sanchez will at least have a familiar face at Inter in the form of another ex-United player, striker Romelu Lukaku.

"He has entered the world of Inter with great humility and has shown a real willingness," Conte said of Belgium international Lukaku. "The rest of the group understood that immediately and have welcomed him in the best possible way.

"He has great qualities as a human and is a true team player. His fitness has improved. We hope he scores as many goals as possible for the team – he has always scored goals."

Inter have two wins from two since Conte arrived at San Siro, but the former Chelsea, Juventus and Italy coach is judging progress by other metrics.

"An important foundation is being built irrespective of results," Conte added. "Enthusiasm shouldn't depend on the results we achieve but the way we obtain them. It should depend on what the team manage to transmit to the fans.

"With today's Inter, you can see that there's a team and club with clear ideas. We're trying to work to find a clearly defined tactical identity on a daily basis: when those who have played less up to this point come into the team, they’ll know exactly what they have to do.

"We are the team that have undergone the most change. It is inevitable that there will be a period of adjustment, but we want to turn the question marks around us into exclamation marks."

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