Inter coach Roberto Mancini says striker Mauro Icardi cannot yet be compared to Napoli forward Gonzalo Higuain despite their goalscoring exploits this term.
Ahead of Inter’s trip to the Stadio San Paolo on Monday, Icardi and Higuain lead the scoring charts for their clubs in Serie A with 10 and four goals respectively.
With Inter having found goals hard to come by this term, despite topping the table, Icardi’s goals have proven vital while Higuain has been in fine form to help Napoli into second ahead of this weekend’s fixtures.
While Monday’s clash could be settled by Higuain or Icardi, Mancini says the two should not be compared.
“Gonzalo has international experience that Mauro doesn’t have yet,” the Italian said of the Argentinian pair.
“It’s impossible to compare them right now, Mauro still has his whole career ahead of him.
“There will be disappointments along the way but I know he’ll become a fantastic striker because he knows exactly where the goal is. He will be a top goalscorer.”
Inter and Napoli have lost just once each in the league this term and look set to challenge Juventus’ recent domestic dominance.
With two points separating the sides, Mancini added: “In these games the players have to give everything.
“We need to stay alert and make sure we attack in numbers in order to score. Right now we’re ahead – we’re in first place and that’s very important.
“It’ll be a big test because it’s our first match against a direct rival away from San Siro. That said, we’re only in week 14 and there are four teams right up there, so the match won’t change anything.
“I think we’ll all be fighting right until the end.”