The Napoli striker has netted double the number of goals his young compatriot has managed, yet the Inter boss says it is still too early to judge who is better at this point
Roberto Mancini says Mauro Icardi cannot yet be compared to Gonzalo Higuain ahead of Inter’s trip to face Napoli on Monday.
Last season’s joint-top Serie A goalscorer Icardi has been languishing behind his compatriot Higuain in their respective tallies this season, with the latter the league’s current top scorer with 10 strikes.
Nerazzurri captain Icardi has been affected by his side’s struggles in front of goal and has only registered four, yet Mancini says it is still impossible to judge who is better at this point in time.
“Gonzalo has international experience that Mauro doesn’t have yet,” the Inter coach 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.”