Samir Handanovic has always been worthy of playing for a team like Inter, according to the Nerazzurri’s legendary former goalkeeper Walter Zenga.
Handanovic recovered from COVID-19 at the weekend and is expected to resume training with his Inter teammates today, ahead of Saturday’s trip to face Bologna on matchday 28 of Serie A.
Zenga knows a thing or two about what makes a great goalkeeper at Inter and talked up the Slovenian’s performances with the club today.
“Handanovic’s performances have always been of a fairly high standard,” L’Uomo Ragno told Gazzetta dello Sport in an interview for Monday’s print edition.
“His displays have been in keeping with what you’d expect from a goalkeeper playing for a prestigious team with a history of great goalkeepers, like Inter.”
Zenga was also asked to pick between four great Inter goalkeepers: Julio Cesar, Gianluca Pagliuca, Handanovic and himself.
“Youngsters identify more with Julio Cesar because he had the fortune to win the treble,” he explained.
“But there’s a difference between those three goalkeepers and myself and it’s not just about talent, technique or style.
“The difference is that I was born at Inter.
“I’ve always been Interista, whereas the others all arrived (from elsewhere).
“I kiss the Inter shirt because it’s my shirt, because I was born here, whereas the others they declared themselves to be Interisti: it’s a bit different.
“For me it was always an advantage to be a fan and I have always lived with criticism and pressure.
“I know that when things were going badly, the fans always expected a bit more from me.”
Handanovic joined Inter from Udinese in 2012 and has made 379 appearances in all competitions.
He has never won a trophy during his time at the club but could be on course to end that drought this season, with Antonio Conte’s side six points clear at the top of Serie A (with a game in hand).