MILAN – New Nerazzurri signing Ever Banega has given an exclusive first interview to us following his arrival at the club.
Welcome to Inter. What does it feel like to join such a great club?
"I was really happy when I heard that Inter were interested in me. Having the chance to join such a big club was an opportunity I just couldn't pass up.”
After the Copa America, you're finally enjoying a bit of holiday. Are you resting up well ahead of a big season with Inter?
“Yes, it was a long hard season that ended with the Copa America – a very tough competition. Now I'm relaxing so that I can start off with the right energy and give my all when I link up with Inter.”
You were one of the best players in the 2016 Europa League final and of course won the trophy. What did that feel like? Which trophy would you like to win with Inter?
"I'm not setting myself any limits: we want to try and win everything. We'll be playing in the Europa League, which is an exciting tournament to be involved in, but we must take it seriously. I've played in it lots of times and it's a very demanding competition.”
Of the trophies you've won during your career, which was the most exciting?
"I've been lucky enough to win the Europa League and that's probably the most important cup I've won but I've also been able to win the Olympics and the Libertadores. I'd love to win the Champions League.”
Which is the favourite goal you've scored?
"I haven't scored that many actually but I'm fond of them. Perhaps some of the best have been the ones I've scored for Argentina.”
You'll be surrounded by compatriots at Inter – Mauro Icardi, Rodrigo Palacio and many others. How important is Inter's Argentine tradition and what how do you feel about playing with other Argentine forwards?
"Lots of Argentine legends have donned the Inter jersey down the year and now it's up to me. Playing alongside guys like Mauro and Rodrigo will make it that much easier for me because they're superb players. I can't wait. I've spoken to Zanetti – we exchanged a few messages and I'm really excited.”
You won the Europa League in the last two seasons and now you'll be playing in it with Inter this year. How much would you like to win it again?
"Obviously it would be amazing to win it again but we know it's a long, tough path. We'll all need to work hard together game after game and pull out all the stops.”
What do you know about Inter's history and who is your all-time favourite Inter player?
"Inter are a club with a long history that should be involved in the biggest competitions year in year out. They've won lots of league titles and other top trophies like the Champions League and it's an honour for me to play here. There have been lots of magnificent players who have pulled on this jersey but I think Zanetti is perhaps the most iconic.”
The Inter fans are excited about seeing you in a Nerazzurri shirt at San Siro, a magnificent stadium. What do you want to say to all our fans?
"I can't wait to play at Inter's home ground, do my bit for the team and win trophies here.”