Former AC Milan coach Arrigo Sacchi expects this evening’s match against Atletico Madrid to be a “test of maturity” for Inter Milan.

Sacchi gave his thoughts on the Champions League round of sixteen second leg in an interview published in today’s print edition of Milan-based newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport, via FCInterNews.

Inter are in Madrid this evening.

The Nerazzurri will face Spanish giants Atletico Madrid at the Metropolitano.

Both teams will know exactly what is at stake. Both will feel that a place in the quarterfinals of Europe’s top club competition is within their reach.

On paper, Inter have a clear advantage, albeit a slender one.

The Nerazzurri won the first leg of the tie three weeks ago 1-0. And in truth, that scoreline did not really reflect their superiority on the pitch.

But playing away in the Spanish capital, it will certainly be a very different story.

The Colchoneros have a much stronger record at home than they do away. And Inter will need to be at their best if they are to put a big blemish on that record.

Arrigo Sacchi: Atletico Madrid Clash A “Test Of Maturity” For Inter

“This evening will be a real test of maturity for Inter,” said former Milan coach Sacchi.

“After winning the first leg 1-0, they’ll have to show up and put in a top performance to go through.”

The ex-Rossoneri and Italy coach made clear that “They have to come into it with a winning mentality.”

Sacchi stated that “I have confidence. Because the Nerazzurri are physically in good condition, play excellent football, and have the experience needed to face matches like this.”

“But I’d like to warn them, because I know the atmosphere at Atletico Madrid, having worked  there years ago.”

“They have an intense, passionate crowd. The fans really push the team on, and that could prove to be a problem for Inter,” Sacchi said.

“There is only one way for them to defuse that danger,” the former coach opined.

“They have to take the initiative away from the Spanish side. They need to leave them without the ball, dominate the pitch.”