The future is near. There are only two matches left until the end of the championship, then it will be time to rebuild over the rubble of a year, that calling it “complicated” would be an understatement. On the eve of Genoa – Inter, Andrea Stramaccioni, from the press room at the A. Moratti training grounds faced off with the journalists at the routine pre-match press conference.
The reporters from Fcinter1908.it were also at Appiano Gentile and we recap what he said:
On Genoa - How did we prepare? We underwent two days trying to manage our energies. The Napoli and Lazio games were intense and both used the same players, except some left the game in a not so good of a state. So in terms of training, we had a mix of preparing the healthy players for the upcoming match and managing the injured ones.
On Chivu – He hasn’t recovered, he is at risk of serious injury and was in a lot of pain. Andrea (Ranocchia) knows that without Juan there are no defenders available and feels like he needs to contribute. We will evaluate using him in the match.
In discussion – I feel that we need to finish the season on a high note. The last results were not positive but we saw a team that played well and they put the opposing teams in difficulty. Inter has not given up and I’m sure we won’t, we are working on this: we want to finish well.
Injuries – I will not give you definitive results, but we are observing and evaluating the fields at the Pinetina, I don’t have any definitive opinions, but we are studying the connection between the football grounds and the injuries.
On yesterday’s meeting – The meeting with Moratti? When you speak they use what you say against you, when you are silent they create fantasy scenarios. I only had a calm chat with the president. We started with several talking points raised about this season. It’s a crucial time for us because we need to be honest and understand how to restart and begin to do well, and I think it’s a good that we met each other. There is nothing to fantasise about.
On Cassano - Antonio is recovering from a bad injury. From Sunday he will contribute to the team. The offensive department’s recovery is important. The rest will be postponed until after Inter – Udinese.
On his confirmation by Moratti - A great show of confidence? I had to analyse the situation with the president. I believe what’s important is to take the right steps in the right direction not to repeat the same mistakes. There are also factors that worsened the situation, this is what we concluded. But what’s important is Inter as a team, and this season has to be fully analysed and understand what were the positive aspects of it, too. Surely we need to re-evaluate everything and I’ll be the first one to undergo this. The president knows and when I frankly laid out the situation to him, it’s up to him to decide. What counts is not me, but Inter, and he is Inter.
On the team – My boys have given their all for the team, they showed courage when things were going wrong, and I have no doubts about them. We have grown closer as a team.
On Cambiasso - He said that we don’t deserve the Europa League? There are episodes that changed the season, but we all know that and we don’t want to justify anything. Alvarez, who slipped was unlucky, but I would never say that only luck had was a factor. But the injuries have penalised us a lot.
On Kovacic - It’s only some exhaustion, and yesterday we kept him aside. He wants to be available for Genoa, but he will play only if there are no risks. He has a wasteful way of playing and he needs to manage it.
On him not having a game plan – This criticism hurts because arrived here and in my 12 year career I have always had my teams play in the same fashion and left my mark on them. Who knows me, would recognise this. If I see a certain module cannot be reused, I realise that I can find success using another one, and change it. Using the trident formation we were 2 points behind Juventus. It was obvious however, that because we lost key offensive players we were forced to change. I am saddened by the criticism, but I don’t care either, because Inter comes first.
On the transfer market – We need top tier investments, but less than what is assumed. We have a good base that we can build on. Kovacic joined us in January and now that I have seen him play, I think that a player that has these characteristics at 19 years of age is a player of an international calibre. This is why I don’t agree with those that say we had a bad transfer period in January.
On the doubts about him – Doubts from Moratti because you’re unlucky? You single me out, but what would you know about who I singled out? Those that won’t be around anymore, are the ones that brought us bad luck (laughs).
We have reached the end in a bad way, until now but we are under emergency and it would be wrong to just throw in the towel. Instead, Moratti will identify, improve and perfect and he is the only one to decide with whom he will continue his work, from myself to the last gardener. He gifted me with the Serie A, I have tried giving him satisfaction and I will always thank him. We have the will to restart and rebuild, and we are all angry. And he’s the first one that is. It’s all in his hands. I am the first one that is responsible and I faithfully told him what we could do and what already has been done, the project he has in mind is clear. We talked about everything. Nobody knows Inter better than him, and he decides.
On the youth players - I believe that both Longo and Duncan have demonstrated, and I know them well and know their value, that they are ready to play, because one played in Serie B, the other even played in a international top-flight league.
They both got a lot of experience and are good prospects that could do great things with Inter next season.
Possible profiles of prospective players - What type of players will we buy on the market? When we finish the season, we will discuss this matter and we will find them. Tomorrow we are meeting a team that needs to find salvation, it would not be right, if I say we are getting a new goalkeeper, while in that same role I use a player I have faith in.
On Nagatomo – There is no reason to keep him out and he will take part in the match, tomorrow. He is happy, motivated and will contribute to the game. Based on the latest medical exams he doesn’t need an operation, and has healed but he is not 100%, I am however, thinking of playing him from the first minute. He seemed fine during the training sessions, and right now there are so many injured players that he might be used from the start of the match.
Preparation problems? One factor is that we played pretty early, many of the players took part in many matches and the number of injuries rose. Nagatomo is motivated and wants to play again, even after the mini-game, there are no reasons to keep him out.
The Confederation Cup? Right now, let’s focus on tomorrow’s game, if the results the way want, he will play, no problem. We will see how it will go and I’m sure it will go well.
On Leonardo - I don’t know him personally, but they all speak well of him. He left a good impression and the president speaks of him as a person with whom he has a good relationship with. But the president has never spoke to me about him, to be honest.
On the team’s defence - Cambiasso has already played as a central defender. Splendhofer, who despite having physical and personal problems, could play too. Meanwhile Pasa showed he can hold his ground well. Two young players could play then? That’s the situation.