Inter head coach Simone Inzaghi feels that the team absolutely must rediscover the same kind of energy and form in away matches that they displayed against Barcelona at the Camp Nou as they head to Portugal to face Porto.
Speaking in a press conference after the Nerazzurri lost 2-1 away to Spezia, as reported by FCInterNews, the 46-year-old admitted that the team’s away form has been anything but ideal, but noted that they are capable of putting in a performance even outside of the San Siro.
Inter could hardly face a more important test of their form away from the San Siro than next Tuesday’s Champions League round of sixteen second leg away at the Estadio do Dragao.
The Nerazzurri have now dropped points in each of their three most recent away matches in Serie A, drawing away to Sampdoria before losing consecutive away fixtures against Bologna and Spezia.
Anything less than an excellent performance away to Porto would certainly see Inter risk watching their first-leg advantage from the first leg of the tie at San Siro evaporate.
Given what reaching the quarterfinals of Europe’s top club competition would represent for the Nerazzurri, this would come as a huge blow in the context of their season.
Accordingly, Inzaghi and his players will know that they have to summon up a different kind of performance than their last few away from the San Siro, which have seen them looking turgid and far from their best.
The team have already put in one excellent away display, in a 3-3 draw away to Barcelona in a matches where their backs were really up against the wall.
The team will have to show the same kind of inspiration in a tough away ground when they travel to Porto on Tuesday.
If there is more of the same as what the Nerazzurri have produced in trips to Liguria and Emilia-Romagna, however, then they could be in for a very bad night in Porto.
Inzaghi stated after the match that “Tonight the team gave everything, and then at the end we said goodbye to our fantastic travelling fans.”
“We’ve played some great away matches, such as the one away to Barcelona,” he continued.
“We know that in Porto we have to play a great match if we’re to reach the quarterfinals.”
Inzaghi defended his team from the charge that they had underestimated their task away to Spezia, noting that “We knew how difficult this match would be, obviously we’re sorry for the result as based on the chances that we created it had to be a different result.”
“We shouldn’t have allowed the first half to end 0-0,” the coach lamented.
“Matches can be decided by individual moments, and in the key moments Spezia were better than us,” Inzaghi made clear.
“It’s a defeat that hurts, and there’s nothing for us to be happy about, but we have to start again immediately because on Tuesday we have a very important match for the rest of our season.”