Inzaghi: ‘Lautaro is fine; Inter will play with confidence’

by | Dec 6, 2021 17:58

Inter coach Simone Inzaghi said Lautaro Martinez ‘is fine’ but that defender Stefan de Vrij is in doubt ahead of Real Madrid. ‘It’s an important match for us, we will play with personality’.

The Nerazzurri fight for top spot in the group and need a win to surpass rivals Real Madrid on Tuesday night.

Inzaghi stressed the team ‘must do something more’ after the defeat in the first leg against Carlo Ancelotti’s men.

“I think tomorrow’s match is important for us. We have already advanced to the next round, like Real Madrid, but we want to play a great match,” Inzaghi said at a press conference.

“We did well in the first leg, but it was not enough and thus we must do something more.”

Perisic: ‘I’m hungry and want to win; Inter want to finish first’

Karim Benzema has been ruled out for the hosts, but Inzaghi highlighted Luka Jovic’s performance against Real Sociedad in La Liga.

“Karim is an important player for them, but us coaches have to live with these situations,” Inzaghi added. “In the last match against Real Sociedad, Benzema was injured and Jovic entered, scoring a goal and providing an assist.”

Inzaghi said the team are confident after a run of good results and believes they have grown since his first months at the wheel.

“There was a need to get to know each other, but the team played well right from the start,” Inzaghi added. “The clear example is the first leg against Real, where we played good football despite losing. We have left few points behind on the road in the league too.

“Now, we arrive from a good streak that has given us greater self-esteem.”

Inzaghi comes up against Italian tactician Ancelotti and praised the former Juventus, Napoli and Milan coach.

“His career speaks for him. We talked before the first leg, it’s always a pleasure to talk football with him,” Inzaghi said. “I’m happy that he’s doing well in the Spanish league, where he has already created an advantage over the second place.

“He deserves compliments, he is a great guy who has won a lot.”

Ancelotti: ‘Both Inter and Real Madrid have grown’

Inter have several players out injured and Inzaghi gave an update on the injury front ahead of the game in Madrid.

“[Andrea] Ranocchia, [Matteo] Darmian, [Martin] Satriano and [Joaquin] Correa won’t be there,” Inzaghi said. “Correa had that problem on Sunday at the Olimpico. I’m very sorry because in my opinion he was growing.

“I know him well and, in my opinion, he was just getting better, having overcome the work and time zones.

“Lautaro [Martinez] is fine, he had no problems. For [Stefan] de Vrij and [Aleksandar] Kolarov, I will tell you after the training.”

Inzaghi said he believes Inter have what it takes to challenge the Spanish giants at the Santiago Bernabeu on Tuesday night.

“The team played great in the first leg and deserved more,” he said. “Tomorrow, we will not have our fans, there will be 50,000 Real fans, even if some of our fans will be there as always.

“We will play with personality and confidence, knowing that we have done something important for the club, because Inter had not advanced for 10 years.

“Tomorrow we want to play a great match, because the opponents and the stadium deserve it. In Madrid, Inter have only won once. There will be pitfalls and difficulties.

“We come to play with personality, great motivation, desire to do well. I will try to prepare them in the best way, then we will see what happens. It’s a game we care about.”

Inzaghi was asked about Vinicius Junior’s form and the Inter coach admitted he will be ‘a special player’ to look out for.

“He has great quality, this year he is having continuity in terms of assists and goals,” Inzaghi said. “Tomorrow, he will be a special player, but like everyone else, because in Madrid they have many top players.

“In addition to Vinicius, the other Blancos will also need maximum attention.”

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