Despite the new Serie A season having just started, it's already time for some Derby della Madonnina's action, as Inter and AC Milan will face this Saturday at San Siro for one of the most awaited clashes of the season. Kickoff is set for noon and you can watch the game live on Paramount+, while there will be a Star Cam on CBS Sports Golazo Network.
Last season, the two sides showed their best, making it to the UEFA Champions League semifinals, as they faced each other with Inter winning both games before losing the final to Manchester City on June 10. In a new season, they both saw huge changes to their rosters, so let's try to see what a potential combined XI would look like.
Don't miss CBS Sports Golazo Network's Morning Footy, now in podcast form! Our crew brings you all the news, views, highlights and laughs you need to follow the Beautiful Game in every corner of the globe, every Monday-Friday all year long
GK: Mike Maignan, AC Milan
Maignan is one of the best goalkeepers around Europe right now as he became a key player since he joined AC Milan in the summer 2021 to replace Gianluigi Donnarumma. Maignan's saves were also crucial over the past two campaigns and Stefano Pioli saw the consequences of not having him available when he was injured for a long time last season. Inter, on the other hand, lost Andre Onana in the summer. He was one of the best goalkeepers of the past season and the Nerazzurri decided to replace him with Yann Sommer from Bayern Munich.
RB: Denzel Dumfies, Inter
Simone Inzaghi's side strength is definitely the wingers, with Denzel Dumfries and Federico Dimarco on the other side. Dumfries' pace is one of the keys for Inter's tactical system, which since the arrival of Antonio Conte back in 2019, plays with a three-line defense, two wingers and two central strikers. The Dutchman already scored one goal and provided one assist in the first opening three clashes of the season.
CB: Stefan de Vrij, Inter
With Fukayo Tomori suspended, Inter's center backs are both in our top XI. Stefan de Vrij started the first three games, since Francesco Acerbi was injured until now, and it's not clear yet who will start between the two on Saturday. It's likely to think that Inzaghi won't change the squad for the most awaited game of the campaign, considering also that Inter are yet to concede their first goal of the season.
CB: Alessandro Bastoni, Inter
The Italian defender is improving week after week, as he also showed during the International break, when he led the defense in both games against North Macedonia and Ukraine, despite playing in a four-back defense under coach Luciano Spalletti. When he plays with two other center-backs as he does with Inter, he also shows off his technical skills and starts the action from behind with his left foot. During the 2022-23 season, he provided six assists to his teammates.
LB: Theo Hernandez, AC Milan
After Maignan, Theo Hernandez is the second player of the AC Milan team to make it into this XI. The French left back has been outstanding since he joined the Rossoneri in the summer of 2019. He was one of the smart moves of Paolo Maldini, as before joining AC Milan he was not considered as great as he is right now. Hernandez's explosive run and shooting abilities have been a deciding factor for the recent success of the club. His attitude on the pitch makes him also one of the most influential players and usually creates some big rivalries on the pitch during the derbies with Dumfries on that part of the pitch.
MID: Nicolò Barella, Inter
Inter have one of the strongest midfields around Europe, as they can count on players such as Nicolò Barella, one of the most talented players of the Italian Serie A. Barella scored nine and provided ten assists to his teammates in the past season, scoring also some key goals such as the ones against Benfica in the UEFA Champions League's quarterfinals second leg. He's creative, he scores and also can provide some key assists to his teammates.
MID: Hakan Calhanoglu, Inter
The rivalry between Inter and AC Milan mainly focused on him in the past two seasons after the Nerazzurri decided to sign him after Calhanoglu didn't agree terms to extend his deal with the Rossoneri. He's a key player for Simone Inzaghi and last season in particular, he also played as a playmaker as well, making him a complete midfielder that can cover different roles on the pitch. This season, after former Inter star Marcelo Brozovic left the club in the summer, he's the starting playmaker of the team.
MID: Ruben Loftus-Cheek, AC Milan
The former Chelsea midfielder is one of the latest additions of the Rossoneri, who signed him this summer and immediately made him a crucial player for the club. Loftus-Cheek plays alongside Rade Krunic and Tijjani Reijnders in the three-line midfield that supports the attacking line. The English midfielder wants to become a key player for the Italian side, as he decided to change both club and country the past summer.
Golazo Starting XI Newsletter
Get your Soccer Fix from Around the Globe
Your ultimate guide to the Beautiful Game as our experts take you beyond the pitch and around the globe with news that matters.
Thanks for signing up!
Keep an eye on your inbox.
There was an error processing your subscription.
ST: Christian Pulisic, AC Milan
The American winger had to be here. Pulisic started off the new season by scoring two goals in the first two Serie A games against Bologna and Torino. He's currently playing as a right winger in the 4-3-3, with Rafael Leao playing on the other side of the attacking line and Olivier Giroud as number nine. The impact of Pulisic has been outstanding and the feeling is that he's finally in the right place to shine, with the right teammates and the right coach who supports him.
ST: Rafael Leao, AC Milan
The most talented player of the top eleven. His pace, his technique and also his young age make him one of the best players around Europe right now. He already showed that he can be incredibly decisive in crucial games as he did against Napoli in the quarterfinals of the 2022-23 Champions League when his run and then assist to Olivier Giroud at the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona in Naples. This season he's called to make another step, with the number ten jersey as well, after he extended the deal before the summer until June 2028.
ST: Lautaro Martinez, Inter
The Argentinian striker and new Inter captain started off the new season as he ended the past one. Lautaro already scored five goals in three Serie A games and he's the leader of the team, after some key figures left Inter in the summer. After what happened between the Italian side and Romelu Lukaku, with the striker ending up at Roma after his move back to Inter fell apart, Lautaro is now called to make an extra effort and bring the Scudetto back to Milan.
Combined XI: Maignan; Dumfries, Acerbi, Bastoni, Theo Hernandez; Barella, Calhanoglu, Loftus-Cheek; Pulisic, Leao, Lautaro.