Inter coach Antonio Conte spoke to gathered reporters at a press conference today at the San Siro following the Nerazzurri’s hard-fought 2-1 victory over Hellas Verona, with Italian media outlet FcInterNews in attendance.
“After four months, seeing the league table should give us all pride. players, staff, team. I think it was important to get 31 points after 12 games. But it’s right to give credit to the guys, even in the Champions League we have shown that we can look into the eyes of important teams, then it’s inevitable that there are steps to be taken in terms of experience and maturity.”
“But we’ve worked really hard and I have to thank everyone at Inter for that, from the players to the warehouse staff and the medical staff.”
“This was the most pleasant thing ever. That’s why today we’re talking about being at the top of the table, even if only for a day maybe, after 12 games and in the Champions League where the fans were proud of how we played against teams ahead of us in experience and background. After four months I can only thank those who are working like this.”
The 50-year-old Italian coach touched on the two goals scored by midfielders today.
“You know very well that in my idea of the game I count so much on goals from midfielders. We started with a lot of goals from the midfielders, then both Lautaro and Romelu started scoring just like Sanchez. But for me the contribution of the midfielders is essential, and in the squad, we have players who have the chance to score goals.”
“I’m talking about Vecino, Gagliardini, people who have the physical structure to do damage. Barella gets in, he has to improve during the build-up phase, but he shoots too many times, tonight he scored a great goal and I’m happy.”
“Brozovic and Sensi can also score, and I expect them to be fit first of all, because they understand the importance of being fresh to play in the league and Champions League.”
The former Chelsea and Juventus coach then discussed the injured players and if they can return after the international break.
“We have to look at ourselves a lot, because we would only hurt ourselves if we looked at others. We must do our best and do what we are doing. I’m proud of the team’s performance, we won against a team that makes intensity they’re best aspect.”
“We now have 15 days where we can recover Gagliardini and Sensi, who came here only because they wanted to be close to the team as well as Ranocchia.”
“But you know what he did in the first seven games, then Gagliardini and Vecino also contributed. Matias has now proved to be well. They’re good guys, play cleanly and in need of playing. It was important to have found them again.”
“Then we also have the return of Danilo D’Ambrosio who returned even with the pain not yet fully gone, this shows the desire to be available. We will have to recover a bit, all giving breath and to give me more serenity of choice without risking injury.”
Finally, Conte spoke about his squad rotation decisions and if Borja Valero and Federico Dimarco could find their way into the squad.
“All players can be resources, today it was important to put Candreva on the bench because today he gives me an alternative.”
“Lazaro is a guy who was born for the wing like Antonio, when you bring these players in the one-on-one, they can become important. I’m happy for Valentino, who we studied and wanted. He has certain characteristics, and now today I find myself with an extra weapon in my arsenal.”
“Borja and Dimarco are training in a commendable way, I always try to make the best choices for the team based on the match. I’m lucky to have good guys and I’m happy.”
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