Inter centre-back Stefan De Vrij praised coach Antonio Conte after a 2-0 win over Crotone put them on cusp of winning the Scudetto.
The Nerazzurri ran out victors at the Stadio Ezio Scida after second half goals from Christian Eriksen and Achraf Hakimi, with the former breaking the deadlock with a deflected effort, whilst the latter sealed the win in stoppage time.
In an interview with Italian television broadcaster Sky Sport Italia after the final whistle, De Vrij praised the impact of Conte on Inter’s title charge, whilst addressing an improvement in form as the season progressed.
“Conte transmits his passion and desire to win, the group is united thanks to the coach,” the Netherlands international declared.
“We didn’t start the season very well for some reasons. Then we realized what had to change, we became more united. Each tries to help the other, we have the winning spirit. So the results have improved.”
De Vrij has forged a strong defensive unit with fellow centre-backs Alessandro Bastoni and Milan Skriniar, but felt that it was a group effort to maintain a solid defensive structure, whilst also revealing how he focused away from the pitch.
“We don’t need to talk about individuals, but about the group. Each of us understood that he had to improve and we all developed together. For me it is a pleasure to play with these very strong defenders.
“I must say that being footballer is my job, but off the pitch it is important to have hobbies and to have fun. It also helps my creativity to play an instrument. I try to improve myself in every aspect.”
Inter will secure a first Serie A title since 2010 should Atalanta fail to beat Sassuolo tomorrow, but De Vrij claimed he was not considering that just yet.
“No, I haven’t thought about it. I didn’t think about tomorrow and we didn’t talk to each other. We are happy for the win,” he concluded.