APPIANO GENTILE - Serie A games don't come much bigger than Inter v Juventus and Rafael Benitez is relishing Sunday night's derby d'Italia clash at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza.
"It's like Liverpool-Manchester United in England and Barcelona-Real Madrid in Spain - pure rivalry and emotion," said the Inter coach in his pre-match press conference. "There's great rivalry, but I think it's better to keep the tone low. This is a match that every coach wants to win, it's just that each one of us has a different way of showing it. Inside, I'm excited, I like winning like nobody else does.
"We face Juventus, a strong team that has changed a lot this year. They will be hungry for victory and for us it will be a difficult and high-intensity match. We are confident in ourselves and our fans, and we can beat anybody."
Referring directly to the fans, Benitez said: "We have to lower the tone in the stands and keep a good intensity on the pitch. I come from a country, England, where the fans respect each other. Tomorrow our fans will have the chance to show the whole world that they can support their teams in a respectful way."
Benitez has named a 20-player squad for the derby d'Italia. "Every player on the list has a chance of playing," he explained. "For Samuel and Pandev we will have to wait. The Argentine trained apart today and Pandev is still feeling a bit of pain. Zanetti? I think he will return in the next match after the international break."
Inter's clash with Juventus comes after an emphatic victory over Werder Bremen in the Champions League. "We gave a good performance and I am pleased with the performances of the youngsters," said Benitez. "We have to work hard to do positive things but I have always had faith in this squad."
When asked which player he would take away from the Bianconeri, Benitez responded with a smile: "Sorry for not giving you a reply, but I will choose dribbling..."