«I remember all of the games that I played with Inter. I spent only four years there in a 21-year career but they were the most beautiful and special moments, those of the greatest quality».
Four intense years. Unforgettable and unmatchable experiences with the Nerazzurri. Lothar Matthäus arrived following Ernesto Pellegrini with a clear promise: “I’m not interested in fighting for third or fourth. I’m here to win.” He had done so already at Bayern Munich and wanted to keep doing so in Italy. He immediately became a key player for Trapattoni’s Inter, the record-breaking side that won 58 points and picked up Scudetto no.13 in the 1988-89 season (watch the documentary here), Matthäus scored nine goals that campaign, including the winner against Maradona’s Napoli.
He was confident and would drop back, demanding that Zenga gave him the ball so he could deal with things. Or, he’d motivate his teammates in the build-up to matches, saying: “Don’t worry, we’ll win tomorrow.” He had a combination of technical skill, strength and leadership that was perhaps unique in the history of football. Characteristics that saw him win the Ballon d’Or in 1990 before showing the trophy at San Siro in the same year that Germany won the World Cup in Italy. He played a big role in that triumph, scoring four goals. The link to Italy was always a positive one for Lothar, he also won the 1980 European Championship in the country, making one appearance at the age of just 19.
For the Nerazzurri, he played 153 times and scored 53 goals. He won the 1989 Scudetto, the Supercoppa Italiana and 1991 UEFA Cup during his spell at the Club. The latter was won alongside his fellow Germans Brehme and Klinsmann, with Lothar scoring a penalty in the first leg of the final against Roma. In 2018, Lothar Matthäus joined the Inter Hall of Fame. Inter had become a part of him. “Inter are my team and always will be. It’s something emotional that’s difficult to explain. When I see the side play, I feel a whirlwind of emotions.”