CONTE: "IT'LL BE IMPORTANT TO GET OFF ON THE RIGHT FOOT"

The Coach on the eve of Inter's match against Slavia Prague: "We need to work hard, we'll give 110%"

APPIANO GENTILE – Inter’s opening Champions League match is just a day away: at 18:55 CEST on Tuesday, they’ll face Slavia Prague in the group stage of Europe’s elite competiton at the Meazza (tickets on sale here). This afternoon, Antonio Conte spoke to the press at the Suning Training Centre and had the following to say: “Our journey in the Champions League is beginning after three league matches. It’ll be important to get off on the right foot, but we need to show high concentration levels and respect to do so. This is because Slavia Prague are a tough side to face: they won their league ahead of big sides like Viktoria Plzen and are also doing well this season. They’re a physical side who play with intensity. They’ve scored 19 goals and only conceded two in the league so far. We’ll need to do well in terms of taking the battle to them and matching them when it comes to intensity. We need to work hard and give 110%.”

With Inter having to play seven matches in 23 days, it’s a tough and busy period: “Obviously, given that we are at the start of a new path, it would be good to have time between matches to train and refine the new knowledge that we are picking up and trying to introduce to our game. However, the Champions League is a great source of motivation. Rome wasn’t built in a day, our journey needs to continue with the enthusiasm it deserves. Our fans’ support is always incredible. However, this enthusiasm shouldn’t be linked to results but what we produce on the pitch. Everyone is showing great desire and willingness, we’re building something big.”

The discussion then moved on to tactics: “Here in Italy everyone is too focused on the little things, what really matters is how you play your game, how you press, how many players you push forward in attack. You need intensity, courage and a desire to have fun. What’s important is that we don’t set our goals now, we won’t set ourselves any limits and we won’t make excuses for ourselves. Let’s just give it our all and keep working hard. Stability is required, only through continuity can you play to win. We don’t have to race around like we’re on a rollercoaster: only through stability can we become dangerous in the eyes of everyone.”

Finally, a focus on individuals: “Regarding Lukaku, if he plays, it will be because he’s proved he’s fully fit. If not, then someone else will play in his place. Biraghi is in good shape, he just needs to take on our style of play. This is the same for all the others like him who didn’t take part in our summer preparations, but we will need everyone and I know I can count on them.”


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