In a revealing new interview, Inter center-back Alessandro Bastoni has confessed that he himself is surprised with how rapid his ascent to the top of the European game has been.
The 22-year-old told Sky Sport Italia earlier this evening that he did not expect to be competing for trophies at the highest level this early in his career, and reflected on the strange feeling of suddenly being so successful and highly regarded.
Bastoni joined Inter in 2017, and experienced loan spells back at Atalanta and then at Parma, but it has been the past two seasons in which he has really caught the eyes of many observers.
“Until two years ago I never would have imagined such a path for myself,” said Bastoni in the interview, “I went to Parma and played for my place in my first real experience.
“It was a very fast path, and I have to thank Inter and Antonio Conte for always believing in me.”
It has only been in the past two years under manager Antonio Conte that Bastoni has really broken out as one of the best defenders in Serie A, and he has been rewarded with a spot in the Azzurri squad at Euro 2020.
“Here in the national team, I have shown my best – for that I have to thank Inter,” the defender continued, “If I had to decribe a similarity between here and Inter it would be precisely the strength of the group, the fact that we try to go as far as possible together.”
“We feel a need to do so well for a country that has suffered so much during this period, our goal is to give joy,” Bastoni explained, referring to Italy’s suffering under the COVID-19 pandemic.
Bastoni went on to talk about the difference between playing under ex-Inter manager Antonio Conte and Italy boss Roberto Mancini: “Conte has his own way of conveying things, with more determination and more meanness than Mancini; this is a substantial difference.”
Bastoni will hope that he can replicate his impressive club form this summer, and win the Euros with his country to cap off an incredible year in which he helped Inter to the Scudetto.