21.12.12 / 17:00
APPIANO GENTILE – "A tiny bit more luck with injuries." That was Andrea Stramaccioni's reply when asked what he wanted for Christmas. "Just a bit of luck with injuries because we've had so many of them – but during games, never in training, all from clashes during games. So let's say that what I'd like would be for my players to be fit."
And what present would he like to improve Italian football? "I actually think it's still a fascinating league, even though there's a bit less money - but that's a reflection of a general trend."Does Stramaccioni think that certain clubs hold more political power? "No, I don't think so, I certainly hope there are no clubs that wield more power than others."
The coach was then asked about his biggest disappointment so far in his career. "Parma, where Inter played badly objectively speaking."
What about Inter's Europa League draw and the fact that the Nerazzurri avoided the tougher teams in the pots? "Yes, we did avoid some of the more competitive sides. We've been handed an average to good draw, but it doesn't change an awful lot. Cluj did well in a Champions League group with Manchester United and Galatasaray."
The Nerazzurri coach will spend a few days back in his native Rome over the Christmas holidays and return to Appiano to start work with the team again on 2 January: "I was the one who decided training should resume on that date, taking into consideration that each player has been given a specific fitness programme to follow during the break, and some of them will be followed by fitness coaches. When they come back we'll all be in retreat together until the match in Udine and we'll have two training sessions a day. We've got lots of South Americans and factoring in the long-haul flights, the stress of the journey etc., I think this is the best way to do it."