Inter v Chievo Preview
So here we are ready for today’s game against Chievo which comes at the end of an awful week for the Nerazzurri. On the bright side this is a match that shouldn’t cause us too much trouble, of course from now on we must win every Serie A game to stand any chance of making up the 5 point difference with Milan but we know Inter will fight with everything they have got to snatch the title back allwe need is a little luck for Milan & Napoli to slip up a few times between now and the end of the season.
1 Julio Cesar, 12 Luca Castellazzi, 21 Paolo Orlandoni;
2 Ivan Cordoba, 4 Javier Zanetti, 6 Lucio, 13 Maicon, 15 Andrea Ranocchia, 23 Marco Materazzi, 55 Yuto Nagatomo;
5 Dejan Stankovic, 8 Thiago Motta, 10 Wesley Sneijder, 14 Houssine Kharja, 17 MacDonald Mariga, 19 Esteban Cambiasso, 20 Joel Obi, 29 Philippe Coutinho;
7 Giampaolo Pazzini, 9 Samuel Eto’o, 22 Diego Milito, 27 Goran Pandev.
Leonardo’s press conference
“Getting criticised is part of the game; it always has been and always will. The praise can also be excessive at times, just as some of the criticism is. But personally I don’t make that criticism into a disaster, or the praise into an amazing achievement. We’ve lost two important games – though we don’t know yet whether they will actually determine anything – but we’ve dealt with them without losing our heads. Now we’re working to find an immediate solution.” That was how Leonardo began his press conference this afternoon ahead of Inter’s Serie A 2010/11 Week 32 match against Chievo.
“The relationship I have with president Moratti is very clear, as all my relationships are,” added the coach in reply to a specific question. “Our meeting was a relaxed affair; that is, as relaxed as it can be after a defeat like that. And I’d like to clarify that, contrary to the things I’ve read in the papers, I came here to work as a coach; when that finishes there won’t be anything else. I didn’t come here to work behind the scenes; I was employed to coach the team. And there is still a very real possibility that we can carry on doing what we have been doing. What ties me to this club, more than my contract, is what we want to achieve together. Nothing has changed for me after these two defeats, apart from the fact that we have to find a solution. You say the president sees me in a director’s role? Well, the president saw me working behind the scenes for many years, because that’s what I used to do, but now I’m a coach. That said, I do still see things from a director’s point of view at times, but that’s normal having been one for so many years. I often look at things from the club’s point of view. What would I have said to myself if were a director now? Perhaps I would have been less kind than the president – he took it extremely well. What do I think about other coaches’ names being linked to Inter? That’s nothing to do with me but it’s all part of the game. I’m really not bothered by it. I’m not afraid of anything and I have nothing to lose. I have something to do, not something to lose. They said that I wanted to quit the other evening, but I had no voice left so I wasn’t able to…” joked Leonardo.
“Now we have to worry about Chievo because we have a chance to get back into the mix,” he continued. “What’s my relationship with the players like? Excellent. I couldn’t say anything negative about any of them in terms of their commitment or anything else. They have to remain calm; they don’t need to think about the coach. They are the core of the team. That much should be clear. Likewise, I always try to do what is best for the team. We get on well, but after that everyone has a job to do, which is to try and win games.
“Every team,” continued Leonardo, “goes through difficult moments in the course of a season. The team that runs out as the overall winner is the one that is able to make sure those moments don’t prove decisive. Generally speaking, this hasn’t been an easy year for Inter by any means; the problems the players have had haven’t made it easy. We played some great football in the match against Schalke at times. And our defence wasn’t all over the place when the goals were scored. But unfortunately the result was what it was.
“We’ve got as far as we have thanks to our desire. I don’t think having immense desire is a negative thing, and I’m sure it will help us again in the future,” explained Leonardo. “That immense desire is one of the great assets of this team. And that’s why it bothers me a bit that the players have been put on trial – more than it does that I have – because they have put so much effort into it. I think it’s disrespectful. What will happen tomorrow? We’ll respond with that same immense desire. From a psychological perspective tomorrow’s game is unconnected. One thing’s for sure: we will look carefully at who has got the most in their legs. We’ll take each game as it comes.”
Finally, there was a brief comment on Diego Milito: “Judging by what I saw on the pitch, Milito is a hero. A hero, considering everything he has been through and the amount of time he had spent on the sidelines.”
Inter have got a big point to prove today so I’m expecting them to pull out all the stops so I’m going to go for a 3-1 win for us I would have gone for 3-0 but there’s no way Leonardo will have sorted the defensive problems so we’re bound to let a silly goal in at some point, not that I’d be disappointed if I’m wrong.