“I am happy at Inter like my home. That’s why I do not like when it comes to the market, other teams that want me, of negotiations or of such topics. I feel good and I want to stay here.”
Mateo Kovacic has been subject of intense transfer speculation this summer. Leverkusen and Barcelona among others have made inquiries, while Liverpool put forth several successive bids, failing to sign the Croatian ace for now. He may be young, but there is no question as to what he wants.
Among other topics, he spoke to Corriere dello Sport about his return to the ‘Pirlo’ position:
“It’s my role, I’m fine there. And if you remember when I arrived at Inter with Stramaccioni I played in that position. Since then I was also used in other parts of the field, but maybe in front of the defense is where I can give my best. I feel this is is my role, made for me.”
What do you need to improve? “I have to make progress from the tactical point of view and while defending. I hear some people say that I am very poor in interceptions (debating this with a wry smile), but I always give my best.”
Without Pirlo, Vidal, and Tevez, how much has Juventus lost? “Three certainly important players left, but for us it’s not time to look at Juve or talk of Juventus who have won the last four league titles in a row. I think that right now Juventus is ahead and we must do everything possible to bridge this gap with the assumption that we are strong and we have to do better than the last two seasons.”
Can you go from either in 2014-2015 to fighting for the title next season? “It is certainly a big step forward… It will take time and effort because the Italian league is very competitive and we as a team have something different. Our goal must be to get into the top three, to bring Inter back to playing in the Champions League. Then we’ll see what happens.”
You have a little thought towards the title, surely… “My hope is to win a trophy with Inter. I arrived two and a half years ago and I think I’ve waited long enough (smiles).”
The leadership and winning habits of Mancini can help to realize this dream? “Mancini is a great coach and the titles he has won in his career speak for him, wherever he worked. In saying this, however, I do not mean to belittle the other managers that I had at Inter. Stramaccioni, for example, despite being young, was good and I was fine with him. The coach knows us more and in July we started training in particulars and we can assimilate to his football. We are committed to give our best and to put into practice what he asks. I hope Mancini remains with Inter for a long time and helps us win some trophies.”
Playing next to Kondogbia in the field: does it make you feel secure playing next to a…colossus? “Kondogbia is definitely strong and I certainly do not have to be the one to discover how good he is because he has played in the Champions League with Monaco and is a French national. He can be very important for us and I am convinced that when he is well integrated in the group, he will give us a big hand. One with his power can shift much in the field.
Next there’s Murillo. “He is one whom I have trained with less, but against Bayern he showed he has a nice personality. He will make his presence felt in the center of the defense.
And Montoya? “He comes from Barcelona and won everything last season. He’s got speed and a good foot.
He is not with you yet, but soon you you should get your compatriot Perisic. How will that purchase be? “I know Perisic well; he is the most talented player in Croatia. He has it all and definitely could do well at Inter.”
Source: Corriere dello Sport
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