APPIANO GENTILE – Milan Skriniar has emphasised just how important the Champions League is for Inter and everyone connected with the club as the Nerazzurri prepare to host Sheriff Tiraspol in Matchday 3 on Tuesday evening.
The Slovakia defender was speaking alongside Simone Inzaghi at the UEFA pre-match press conference.
Last year you had Achraf Hakimi at right-back while this season it's Matteo Darmian and Denzel Dumfries, who offer a bit more defensively. How does that change things for you?
"Hakimi is a fabulous player but Darmian played lots of games last season too. I'm very happy playing with Matteo – and the same goes for Dumfries. It doesn't change much for me personally. I get on with my own job and try to do my bit for the team.”
Inter haven't kept a clean sheet in seven league games. What do you think is the reason for that?
"We are conceding too many goals. We need to find the right balance between attack and defence because if you don't let any in you're more likely to win. We're not happy when we concede and that's definitely something we need to improve.”
You've scored two goals already this season. What do you differently in the box now?
"I have to say we have some excellent free-kick and corner takers. It's nice when you get on the end of a ball in the area and hopefully there are a few more goals to come this season.”
Have the more experienced players in the squad like yourself spoken to the others about how to improve in the Champions League?
"There's been no need to talk about it because the new guys know full well how keen we are to reach the next round, as we haven't been able to the last few years. We all know what it means to play for Inter and how important the Champions League and Inter are for the fans. We want to go through and we're focused on winning this match tomorrow.”
Is it more difficult for international players like yourself this season when you have three international breaks with three matches in each one?
"It's certainly a lot of games but when you play for a club like Inter you want to be involved in all of them. We have a strong squad with great players and we're happy to be competing on several fronts.”