Samir Handanovic deserves the utmost respect from Inter fans because he is an excellent captain, according to Nerazzurri legend Beppe Bergomi.

Handanovic has received a fresh wave of criticism and scrutiny in recent weeks after another series of cheap mistakes during Inter’s run to the Serie A title.

The 36-year-old is not guaranteed to remain Inter’s first-choice goalkeeper for next season, although it seems that is the most likely scenario for now.

In any case, former Inter defender Bergomi told Sky Sport Italia on Thursday: “I consider Handanovic a great captain, because I like him and because nobody is infallible.

“I see even other great keepers make mistakes, but I want to underline the constant improvements Handanovic has made: he’s got better with his feet, for example.

“On the few occasions he’s come in front of the cameras, he’s always given positive messages while taking some responsibility.

“I think this is something he does inside the dressing room as well.”

Bergomi was keen to defend Handanovic from his critics after his recent errors, which arguably cost Inter four points between their games at Napoli and Spezia.

The Slovenian also came close to gifting Hellas Verona an equaliser during Inter’s 1-0 win two weeks ago, only to be saved when the goal was disallowed for a foul.

“I think certain mistakes he’s made towards the end of the season could be borne from his desire to reach his objective and win something with Inter,” Bergomi suggested.

“That means you feel a bit of pressure, you see the finish line is arriving and perhaps you make a mistake.

“But who doesn’t make mistakes? Every great goalkeeper has made them.

“I want to underline Handanovic’s silent leadership, the way he acts on the pitch, how he accepts criticism and always bounces back.

“He’s always improved from his mistakes.”

Inter are reportedly considering Udinese’s Juan Musso and Hellas Verona’s Marco Silvestri as possible replacements for Handanovic.