Jose Mourinho deserves the plaudits for leading Inter to the UEFA Champions League title in 2010, according to Julio Cruz.
El Jardinero left Inter the year before they went on to win an historic treble, culminating in victory over Bayern Munich at the Santiago Bernabeu.
He spent one season working for Mourinho and explained how the Special One made everyone’s dreams at the club come true.
“I worked under Mourinho for a year,” Cruz recalled in an interview with Il Posticipo.
“I didn’t learn much from Jose because I was already a certain age.
“We had won everything before his arrival except for the Champions League and with Mourinho they did it, Inter brought home the trophy that the fans wanted.
“Massimo Moratti was also expecting it: he always believed in his players and he spent a lot of money.
“The former president did all this for 15 years; Inter did everything with Moratti.”
Cruz went on to share his regrets about how his former teammate Adriano’s career panned out, given the well-documented problems that L’Imperatore experienced in his personal life.
“Yes, I was sorry because he was a smart guy and could have become an incredible player,” Cruz recalled.
“In those years, Adri had personal problems.
“I’m sorry because he could have done even more with Inter.”
The former River Plate forward then spoke on what it was like to play alongside Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the Inter attack.
“Ibra was an established player in the world of football,” Cruz explained.
“Zlatan and I did very well because we had the same physique and occupied the same place on the pitch.
“One year we scored many goals but I also remember when I played with Alvaro Recoba or Hernan Crespo, Adriano or Obafemi Martins.
“If you are in a great team like Inter you have to do well with everyone.”
Cruz was also asked about whether the strong Argentine contingent at the club at the time made him feel more at home and he also spoke on some of his other teammates he got on well with.
“Yes, it’s true but when I arrived at Inter I already spoke Italian.
“I remember Francesco Toldo with pleasure, he was a fantastic person and we still have a good relationship.
“There was Luis Figo and Sinisa Mihajlovic too, it was a beautiful team.
“Roberto Mancini did everything to ty to win with Inter.”