Inter need a bit of nastiness, says Ausilio

The Nerazzurri chief has slammed his side’s performance against Cagliari and has told the players they need a change of mentality

Inter sporting director Piero Ausilio has voiced his dismay with the Giuseppe Meazza’s 4-1 Serie A loss at the hands of Cagliari on Sunday and feels they need a certain nastiness if they are to improve their results.

Marco Sau gifted Cagliari an early lead before Pablo Ovaldo restored parity after 18 minutes. Nevertheless, an Albin Ekdal hat-trick saw the away side emerge victorious as Inter were reduced to 10 men following Yuto Nagatomo’s red card.

Head coach Walter Mazzarri’s side sit fifth in the Serie A table after five games and Ausilio has stressed that they must do better if they are to climb up the table.

“I believe a team that wants to become great can’t let in the kind of goals we let in,” the Inter chief told his club’s official website.

“When you concede four goals like that it shows you lack the mental edge, in addition to the physical one.

“I should also mention a bit of nastiness, which you need when the opponent always gets there first. I believe that’s what we’ll be looking at most of all.

“A team that has big aspirations like Inter has must react right away. The Cagliari result is already behind us.”

Inter will be looking to bounce back on Thursday when they host Qarabag in the Europa League.

Mazzarri: I made mistakes in Inter selection

The 52-year-old feels he did not pay enough attention to the fitness levels of certain players and believes their 4-1 defeat to Cagliari serves as a lesson to the team


Inter coach Walter Mazzarri has admitted to making mistakes in his selection for his side’s 4-1 defeat to Cagliari on Sunday.

The Milan club went 1-0 behind after Marco Sau’s opener 10 minutes in, before Pablo Osvaldo tied it up eight minutes later. Yuto Nagatomo was dismissed shortly after, though, and an Albin Ekdal hat-trick saw the visitors lead 4-1 at the break.

And Mazzarri says he should have looked more carefully when evaluating the fitness levels of some of his players.

“I made some mistakes when evaluating the squad rotation,” he told Sky Sport Italia.

“I thought the team was in great shape this week and didn’t pay enough attention to the fitness levels, so I played some players who were on their third or fourth games in a row and that showed.

“Cagliari were good on the ball and we could not keep up our style of football without good fitness levels.

“Of course, once it rains then it pours, as we went down to 10 men. An experienced team would’ve sat back and controlled the situation, waited for the second half and not conceded four in the first half.

“It became impossible to turn it around by that point. It is a lesson, the lads will learn from this and I already said that to the players.”

A mistimed tackle from Nemanja Vidic gave away a penalty to Cagliari, but Andrea Cossu’s effort was saved by Samir Handanovic, and Mazzarri said he should not have included the former Manchester United defender in the starting XI.

“He is probably one of those I used too much,” he added. 

“He’s strong and a leader, so I didn’t want to rest him, but he was fatigued and therefore below par. 

“I take responsibility for that, as I should’ve made more changes and realised there are players who at this moment cannot play three or four times in a row.

“Fatigue has an effect on your physical and psychological performance. Some players weren’t sharp and all it takes is half a metre or your body leaning the wrong way when a player runs at you and there isn’t the strength to make up for it.

“Mind you, some of the players who seemed stranded in the first half were woken up by those four slaps in the face.”

The 52-year-old also believes the game turned on Nagatomo’s red card in the first-half.

“When a coach loses 4-1 and then comments on a red card, then he gets criticised. Of course there are moments in the game that can change it and if we hadn’t gone down to 10 then we wouldn’t have conceded four, but never mind.

“Nagatomo unfortunately made a mistake on the first goal, so he was irritable and in an attempt to make up for it perhaps went into the challenges with too much emphasis.”

Inter 1-4 Cagliari: Ekdal shines as Nerazzurri crumble

The visitors pushed on after Yuto Nagatomo was sent off after receiving two yellow cards, with Marco Sau opening the scoring before Albin Ekdal went on to score a hat-trick

A first-half Albin Ekdal hat-trick inspired Cagliari to a stunning 4-1 Serie A thrashing of 10-man Inter at San Siro on Sunday.

The Sweden international had never scored more than one goal in a single domestic season before, but he was superb as Cagliari ran riot - assisted by Inter captain Yuto Nagatomo’s 27th-minute red card.

Cagliari went into the match bottom of the table with just one point and, although Pablo Daniel Osvaldo cancelled out Marco Sau’s opener, Ekdal swiftly restored their lead just after Nagatomo’s dismissal.

Samir Handanovic kept out Sau’s 43rd-minute penalty with his 19th Serie A spot-kick save, but Ekdal netted either side of that, ensuring he doubled his total Cagliari goal tally inside 45 minutes.

Nemanja Vidic continuing his shaky start to life at Inter will have concerned Walter Mazzarri, with the hosts also displaying a lack of creative ingenuity in a second half which saw them fail to mount any kind of comeback.

Cagliari comfortably saw the match out to earn a first victory at Inter since 1995, while coach Zdenek Zeman claimed his first three points since taking over in July.

The calamities for the hosts began with just 10 minutes on the clock as Vidic and Nagatomo failed to cope with a long pass from the back and the ball made its way through to Sau, who lashed a half-volley home from the edge of the area.

Cagliari completely switched off in the 18th minute, though, as Inter drew level. Rodrigo Palacio played a quick free-kick into the left side of the area and the unmarked Osvaldo tapped in for an easy finish. 

Inter’s chances took a blow midway through the half though as Nagatomo received two second yellow cards in quick succession, the latter for a clumsy tackle on Andrea Cossu, and Cagliari capitalised almost instantly.

Handanovic was unable to keep hold of Daniele Dessena’s fierce attempt and Ekdal knocked in the rebound.

Ekdal was decisive again a few minutes later, as Victor Ibarbo rampaged down the right and cut a pinpoint pass into the danger area, which the Swede coolly fired into the roof of the net. 

Handanovic seemingly gave Inter a lifeline as he denied Sau from the penalty spot after the attacker went down theatrically under Vidic’s challenge, but he was helpless from the resulting corner.

Inter failed to make the clearance and Ekdal smashed past Handanovic from point-blank range to give Cagliari a resounding lead in the 44th minute.

The hosts predictably piled the pressure on from the start of the second half and saw Osvaldo’s 52nd-minute tap-in disallowed for offside.

That setback seemed to wipe out all Inter’s confidence as they failed to test young goalkeeper Alessio Cragno sufficiently, Cagliari in fact going closest to the game’s sixth goal as substitute Diego Farias hit the side-netting.

A lack of late action saw the visitors cruise to a victory which lifts them off the bottom but Inter’s first defeat of the season leaves them already seven points behind Serie A pacesetters Juventus and Roma.

Inter-Cagliari Preview: Mazzarri's men look to maintain momentum against struggling Sardinians

The Nerazzurri defeated Atalanta at San Siro in midweek and will be targeting another three points against a side rooted to the bottom of the Serie A standings

Walter Mazzarri will hope his demand for Inter to be more clinical will be put into action when they face struggling Cagliari on Sunday.

Mazzarri’s men have enjoyed a strong start to the new Serie A season, taking eight points from their first four games while scoring 10 goals and conceding just one. 

Seven of those goals came in a demolition of Sassuolo earlier this month but, following a 2-0 win over Atalanta on Wednesday, Mazzarri called for his side to be more ruthless in front of goal in order to sustain a challenge at the summit of the Italian top flight.

Cagliari should prove the ideal opposition for Inter to perfect their goalscoring touch given the dismal campaign the Sardinians have endured so far.
 
Zdenek Zeman’s men sit at the foot of the table with one point to their name and have yet to keep a clean sheet.

The visitors’ record at San Siro, where they have won just once against Inter in a 2-1 triumph in 1995, should give Mazzarri’s side further reason for confidence, although they were held to 1-1 draws home and away by Cagliari last term.

For Zeman the frustrating wait for his first win since taking over at the Stadio Sant’Elia in July has been defined by a lack of killer instinct, something that was evident as Cagliari failed to build on Andrea Cossu’s opener and slipped to a 2-1 home loss to Torino on Wednesday.

Czech coach Zeman left that encounter ruing what might have been but the former Roma boss remains confident that Cagliari have the quality to perform to a higher standard.

“The team has the quality to do well,” Zeman said after the Torino defeat. “We must acquire more conviction and for this we have to work so hard.”

Cossu, the 34-year-old midfielder who has netted two of Cagliari’s three goals, will likely be looked upon to lead by example as Cagliari go in search of a rare triumph over Inter. 

However, with strikers Pablo Daniel Osvaldo and Mauro Icardi having already found the net six times between them, Inter’s forward line should be of greater concern to a team that finished a lowly 15th in the top tier last season.

Inter also have the benefit of a fully-fit squad, while Cagliari have no new injury concerns to worry about with midfielder and long-term absentee Sebastian Eriksson still on the sidelines due to a knee complaint.

Barcelona & Real Madrid earn four times as much as Bayern Munich from TV rights

Barcelona and Real Madrid earned almost four times as much money from television rights as Bayern Munich last season.

According to a special report carried out by La Nueva Espana, the Clasico duo both received €140 million for coverage of their games during the 2013-14 campaign, while the Bavarians accrued €36.93m during their title triumph.

Barca and Madrid earn more from the sale of TV rights than any other side in Europe as there is no collective agreement in place in La Liga, meaning Spain’s two biggest clubs are free to negotiate their own deals.

Consequently, while the Primera Division brings in €755m in TV deals, the Clasico pair account for approximately 34% of that figure. Interestingly, Valencia (€48m) received more money than Atletico Madrid (€42m), who won La Liga last season.

The Premier League remains the biggest draw in world football, as underlined by the fact that its lowest earners in 2013-14, relegated Cardiff City, collected €74.5m, which is just under €30m more than Ligue 1 winners Paris Saint-Germain (€44.69m).

In total, England’s top flight clubs raked in €1.875 billion last year, with Liverpool earning the most money, with €117.05m, just ahead of champions Manchester City (€115.89).

The Premier League brought in over €1bn more than its closest rival, Serie A, which, despite its perceived financial problems, still generated €846.1m in TV deals. Unsurprisingly, Juventus were the highest-earners, with €94m, with Inter second on €80.4m and city rivals AC Milan third, on €77.9m.

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