Former Nerazzurri defender and current Inter youth team coach Cristian Chivu spoke with Milano based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, discussing the treble winning season in 2010 starting with the semi-final clash against Barcelona.
“It was a historic match. At the Camp Nou I was not even going to play, then Pandev got injured and at the last minute Mourinho lined me up on the left, which was a position I had not played in since I was a child in Romania in 1994. Anyone in my place would have also said yes, just for a chance to play.”
Was Mourinho the real difference?
“Yes, but we have to be aware of the fact that the difference is made on the pitch. You can be the best coach in the world, but if the players don’t get your message and ideas, then you’re not going anywhere.”
What should today’s Inter take from the one from 2010?
“It takes some luck of course, but you must believe in what you are doing. You must understand that to win, you need to give everything you’ve got.”
What are the chances that Inter advance past the group stages?
“It’s a balanced group, Inter has great qualities and if I have to find a defect in the team it would be the lack of experience at these levels but Spalletti can make up for it. I played a Champions League game with him, he has decisive qualities.”
Totti says that in the Serie A no-one can stop Juventus from winning, what do you think?
“They are the favorites and everyone knows it, but all the other teams must try as they have an obligation to compete. I’m talking about Roma, Napoli, Milan, and Inter of course. Spalletti has Icardi who continues to improve year after year, he has scored 100 goals, the numbers speak for themselves.”
What did you think of Lautaro Martinez?
“I am sure that Spalletti will eventually find a way for him and Icardi to play at the same time, I think he is a very good player.”