Italian football legend Fabio Cannavaro has insisted that both AC Milan and Inter will require time to become genuine title contenders once again.
The 2006 FIFA World Player of the Year told Premium Sport (via FourFourTwo) that the two Chinese-backed clubs must show patience after their respective recent squad overhauls, admitting: "They have financial resources and they will always be fighting for the biggest objectives.
19 - Inter have collected 19 points over the opening seven games of a Serie A campaign for the first time since 2002. Present.— OptaPaolo (@OptaPaolo) October 1, 2017
"But it will need time in order for them to organise themselves. Napoli, for example, have arrived at their level after 10-12 years."
Cannavaro now manages Chinese Super League outfit Tianjin Quanjian, and it has been the substantial Chinese investment into Milan's two biggest clubs that has prompted suggestions one of the pair could lift the Serie A title this year.
Juventus have commanded Italian football by winning the Scudetto in five consecutive seasons with Inter's last triumph coming in 2010 under Jose' Mourinho and Milan's in 2011 - their first in seven years.
Milan's recruitment policy has been geared towards quick results, with Leonardo Bonucci and Lucas Biglia among the new arrivals in a summer outlay of around £175m for the red and black half of the city, whilst the blue and black half spent a more modest £72m - with Matias Vecino a notable acquisition.
Napoli's stellar start to the season and Juve's experience may prove difficult to content with. But Inter have begun well in Serie A and Milan will be looking to transfer their positive Europe League form into the domestic competition.
The city rivals actually go head-to-head after the international break at San Siro on October 15th in a star-studded derby.