‘Destroyed’ Asllani ‘didn’t sleep for four days’ after missing goal against Barcelona

Inter midfielder Kristjan Asllani admits he didn’t sleep for four days after missing a goal against Barcelona in the Champions League in October and denies he wants to leave the Nerazzurri.

The Albania international joined Inter on an initial loan deal with an option to buy from Empoli last summer but hasn’t been getting regular playing time under Simone Inzaghi.

“I have to improve, I am playing in a midfield with many champions, there’s nothing strange,” the 20-year-old told Gazzetta.

“I am ready, but I didn’t think I’d get much playing time because of my teammates’ qualities. I am happy when I play and I am here to learn. I consider Marcelo Brozovic and Hakan Calhanoglu two masters.”

There were reports in Italy last night that he wanted to leave the club to play more consistently elsewhere.

“No, it’s fake news. I am happy to be here and I want to stay. I made this choice and I’d do it again. I knew the path and I know it’s all part of the process.

“Everyone has welcomed me warmly here. Danilo D’Ambrosio is unique, he is the man who transmits the ‘Interism’ from one generation to another. He keeps telling me that the name on the back of the shirt is not important, what matters is the crest on the chest. One day, I’d like to be like him and mentor young players.”

What would he like to learn from his teammates in midfield?

“Tranquility with the ball from Brozovic, grit and attitude from Barella and technique from Calhanoglu and Mkhitaryan, they have superior quality. From Gagliardini, the physical strength and his late runs.”

Asllani has made 12 appearances for Inter this season, including five in the Champions League.

This past October he could have gotten his name on the scoresheet in a Champions League match against Barcelona at Camp Nou but missed a fair chance of scoring from an excellent position.

“When I don’t think about it, somebody else does it for me. When I walk in the streets, there’s always somebody mentioning it and it’s a bit annoying,” the midfielder admitted.

“However, I admit I didn’t sleep for four days after that, I spent the nights watching the action.

“I was destroyed, but everyone consoled me. I can’t go back in time, but this is the time to look forward. Before Porto, we must focus on Napoli. If we win on January 4 we can reopen the title race to everyone.”

They still managed a 3-3 draw in Spain and went beyond the group stage finishing runners-up to Bayern Munich.

The Nerazzurri beat Atalanta 3-2 in the last match before the World Cup break in November and resume the season on January 4 in a home match with table leaders Napoli.

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