Antonio Conte’s celebrations during Inter’s win over Lazio on Sunday are proof he is becoming a true Interista, according to Nerazzurri legend Marco Materazzi.
Conte was visibly elated with the team and understandably so as they moved to the top of the Serie A standings thanks to the 3-1 victory over Simone Inzaghi’s side.
He was seen running down the touchline to celebrate wildly with his players after Lautaro Martinez scored the third goal with 25 minutes left.
“Conte’s celebration is due to the fact that he is becoming more and more of an Interista and I really like this thing,” Materazzi explained in an interview with Italian daily newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport.
The 2006 World Cup winning defender then went on to voice his views about the dispute between Conte and Juventus president Andrea Agnelli during last Tuesday’s Coppa Italia semi-final second leg, where there were several heated exchanged.
“Conte looked like he had become an Interista.
“On Saturday he apologised for that gesture while reiterating that he had been provoked.
“Admitting one’s mistakes is a very beautiful thing.
“We are Inter and we are used to the noise of enemies.
“It makes everything much more beautiful, special.”
Materazzi, who made almost 300 appearances across all competitions during a 10 year spell with Inter, was then asked if a comparison can be made between one of his former Inter coaches, Jose Mourinho, and Conte.
“Granted that I cannot and do not want to make a comparison, they are similar in how they live the matches and how they know how to get the best out of their players, even if they prepare in different ways.”
Materazzi also spoke on the importance of team manager Lele Oriali, who was at the club during his spell with Inter.
“Oriali is a true Inter fan, this is enough and more.”
Inter are one point clear of AC Milan now, following the Rossoneri’s surprising defeat against Spezia on Saturday.
Conte’s side can extend the gap to four with a win in Sunday’s crucial Derby della Madonnina.