Branca: "We’ll assess everything at the end"

TRIESTE – Technical director Marco Branca was interviewed by Sky Italia before kick-off in the Cagliari v Inter match. One of the many topics touched on was Fredy Guarin, who made his full debut today: will the remaining games this season will be used to decide whether to make his transfer permanent? “He doesn’t need these games to prove himself; they are only to assess his fitness and see him increase his contribution to the team. There is no doubt about his technical value.”

The technical director was then asked about the future of Mauro
Zarate and what sort of player Inter are looking to bring in over the summer: “We’ll assess things at the end of the year, when we’ll look at how everyone has done, not only Mauro. Will the future see a mix including more youngsters? We
must choose the right mix and to do that we’ll have to see how
much we have as a club for transfers. Highly talented youngsters cost
a lot of money, so we’ll see how far we can go. Certainly four or
five of our Primavera players will train with the team in the
pre-season and then we’ll see. We want to give them a chance too.”

What about Mario Balotelli? Comments made by Branca the other day seemed to suggest the door was open for a return…
“We’ll see about that soon. It wasn’t an opening of the door; for players like Mario, who grew up here with us and whom we are fond of, the door has never
been closed.”

Statements after the draw agains’t Cagliari

Coach Andrea Stramaccioni:

TRIESTE – “It leaves a bitter taste,” Andrea Stramaccioni admitted straight away, as he gave his post-match thoughts to Sky Italia. “Bitter because we kept trying to win the game right up to the last minute, with Ranocchia unable to turn in that chance that was almost a goal-line clearance. A shame. Inter are alive though, and they showed that against an excellent Cagliari side – a solid, healthy team that caused us problems particularly in the second half. We must give them credit for that but Inter showed they are alive and well.”

The Nerazzurri coach continued: “There were spells when we did well but we weren’t able to keep playing with the same intensity throughout both halves, given that we were up against opposition in good shape. But Inter showed character to get level. I thought we looked good although I know that it’s only the result that counts.”

Stramaccioni was asked to comment on Guarin’s performance: “Positive, I thought it was positive. For you he was under a sort of magnifying glass, maybe you were expecting something special from him, but his contribution was good. Then of course he’s not fully fit yet so I decided to take him off.”

From midfield to attack, and an assessment of how Zarate and Forlan performed in the three-pronged attack with Milito: “It’s clear that our attacking players need the support of the rest of the team. They did well when the team was playing well and coming up with ideas; perhaps they were a little more absent when we found it harder, but it’s better to talk about the whole team than individuals. Still, Zarate on the left and Forlan on the right is something we’ve practised. They are both comfortable in those positions – in fact our goals came from those two.”

Does today’s result erase any last hope of clinching third place? “I think looking at the results it’s all very even and there are lots of unpredictable matches. We’ll take each game as it comes; there’s no point drawing any conclusions with seven games to go.”

Stramaccioni continued his analysis with Mediaset: “All things considered you have to say it’s a shame because we ended the game on the attack and because Agazzi kept them in it with that save from Zarate. It’s a real shame because with an extra man we did everything we could to win it. In terms of the football, and also psychologically, Inter are alive and they don’t accept losing.”

The Nerazzurri coach assessed the contribution of Esteban Cambiasso, who scored the second goal, and Fredy Guarin, who started his first match this afternoon: “Cambiasso has had two top performances, he’s in good shape and he’s helping Inter. Guarin found it a little hard to keep tabs on Cossu initially; he’s not fully fit yet, but we’ll wait for him.”

Stramaccioni also gave his view of Inter’s defensive play: “Strangely we struggled more from set pieces against Genoa than we did today – Astori’s goal was really something special – but we do need to work on defending set pieces, as we already are.”

“Agazzi and a bit of bad luck denied us victory,” the coach then said to Rai. “We responded superbly both times we conceded, showing desire and quality to create the openings through our wide forwards, first Zarate and then Forlan. Defensive mistakes? I think it’s always a team thing. For the first goal Astori pulled out a trump card while for the second we could have done better. But we have to give Cagliari credit for putting together and then finishing off a lovely move.”


Captain Javier Zanetti:

TRIESTE – Javier Zanetti showed his disappointment after a game you felt Inter could have come away from with more than just a point after creating, fighting, coming back, but not winning. That was the captain’s view as he gave his thoughts to Inter Channel after the match: “Looking at the results at other grounds and considering what we did ourselves, maybe we deserved a bit more. We created a lot but we accept the draw, even though it harms our chances. We’re already looking ahead to the next game.”

Cagliari v Inter marked the debut of Fredy Guarin: “I thought he did well out there,” said Zanetti. “His work rate was excellent. Or course he’s not quite up to scratch yet because he was sidelined for a long time but I think he’ll only get back to his best by playing. I think he has an important role to play in the future of Inter.”

Thoughts now turn to the Nerazzurri’s next opponents, Siena, who visit the Meazza on Wednesday: “We’ve got another big game ahead of us against a tricky side, who won again today against Atalanta. We don’t have long to prepare for it but we’ll work as best we can.”

Zanetti was then asked to comment on the treble dream of cousins AC Milan after their two defeats in a week (Barcelona on Tuesday and Fiorentina today): “I honestly didn’t expect it but I think it was hard for them to come to terms with getting knocked out of the Champions League. They are still a great team and I think they will do battle with Juventus right down to the wire.”

The Rossoneri weren’t the only ones ruing three dropped points today, as Roma were beaten by Lecce: “Lecce is a hard place to go to and they’re fighting for survival. There are no guaranteed results at this stage.”


Esteban Cambiasso:

TRIESTE – Esteban Cambiasso was asked by Sky Italia what the 2-2 draw between Cagliari and Inter means: “It means that we have a point, whereas we wanted all three, but this is a tough league. We tried everything but we couldn’t get another goal. We managed to get ourselves level again after falling behind but not the win. The fact remains that this team tries to play football and maintain an attacking mentality. I’m playing an important and decisive role again? For you lot that seems to change from week to week…”


Fredy Guarin:

TRIESTE – Fredy Guarin spoke to Inter Channel after making his full debut against Cagliari: “I’m fairly happy with how I’m doing on an individual level. I’m improving little by little and still trying to find my rhythm but I feel good. I’m disappointed we didn’t win today: we really wanted a victory and we had the chance to get one – a pity. We’ll try to look ahead now and go out and win the next one against Siena on Wednesday.”

Football news

Primavera: Inter 1-0 Vicenza

MILAN – Daniele Bernazzani’s Nerazzurri U19s saw off Vicenza in the rescheduled Week 22 fixture of the Campionato Primavera this afternoon. Marko Livaja scored the only goal of the match heading home Crisetig’s corner three minutes into the second half. Overall it was a deserved result as Inter played a good game – at a high tempo in the first half, then in fits and bursts in the second period. The Nerazzurri are now on 49 points and remain in first place with two matches left to play.

Inter 1-0 Vicenza (HT: 0-0)
Scorer: Livaja 48.

Inter (4-3-3): 1 Sala; 3 Alborno, 5 Kysela, 4
Spendlhofer, 2 M’Baye; 7 Romanò, 8 Crisetig, 6 Duncan; 9 Longo, 10
Livaja (14 Benassi, 63), 11 Forte (17 Terrani, 79).
Unused subs: 12 Cincilla, 13 Pasa, 15 Falasca, 16 Candido, 18 Vojtus.
Coach: Bernazzani.

Vicenza (3-5-2): 1 Cavallari; 2 El Hasni, 3 Capitanio, 5
Caratelli; 7 Sandrini, 4 Fabris, 6 Pavan, 8 Bruno, 11 Civiero (18
Markelis, 54); 9 Postorino (17 Scarpa, 61), 10 Cavion (16 Aboagye, 81).
Unused subs: 12 Franceschin, 13 Cedromaz, 14 Vendrametto, 15 Teresakis.
Coach: Barbugian.

Referee: Manganiello (Pinerolo).

Primavera: Inter 4-0 Padova

MILAN – The Nerazzurri U-19s coached by Daniele Bernazzani got back to winning ways this afternoon in their Campionato Primavera Week 24 match against Padova. And they did it in style, blowing away the opposition with a thoroughly convincing 4-0 win. It was one-way traffic virtually from the kick-off and with just four minutes on the clock Romanò gave Inter the lead. Castaignos made it two in the 12th minute as the Primavera took a stranglehold on the match. Two minutes after the restart Livaja killed off any lingering hopes Padova might have had of staging a comeback when he netted his first goal for Inter. He went close to making it a brace before Forte rounded off the scoring on the hour mark.

Watching today’s game from the sidelines at the Centro Sportivo Giacinto Facchetti in Milan were Andrea Stramaccioni, Piero Ausilio, Ernesto Paolillo, Roberto Samaden, Gianfanco Bedin and Mario Corso.

Inter 4-0 Padova (HT: 2-0)
Scorers: Romanò 4, Castaignos 12, Livaja 47, Forte 59.

Inter (4-3-3): 1 Di Gennaro; 2 Pecorini (13 Giannetti 76), 5 Kysela, 4 Spendlhofer, 3 M’Baye; 7 Romanò, 6 Duncan, 8 Crisetig;
11 Forte (18 Terrani 61), 9 Castaignos (17 Candido 45), 10 Livaja.
Unused subs: 12 Cincilla, 14 Alborno, 15 Falasca, 16 Benassi.
Coach: Bernazzani.

Padova (4-3-3): 1 Ruffato; 2 Beccaro, 6 De Basi, 5
Girdvainis, 3 Barison (13 Cavestro 21); 7 Banzato, 4 Tessato, 8
Longato; 11 Zanetti (15 Beghetto 80), 9 Guiessan (17 Voltan 56), 10
Unused subs: 12 Zanoni, 14 Beccaro, 16 Cavallini.
Coach: Favaretto.

Referee: Aureliano (Bologna).

Booked: Tessari 63, Becchero 85, Giannetti 87.

Serie A, Inter v AC Milan: tickets on sale 12 April

MILAN – F.C. Internazionale wishes to announce that, barring any decisions taken
by the public authorities, tickets for the 2011/12 Serie A Week 37 match between Inter and AC Milan will go on sale from Monday 12 April. Tickets can be purchased through the
usual official channels:

– branches of Banca Popolare di Milano, Banca di Legnano, Banca Popolare di Mantova;
– the "Solo Inter" store;
– online at

Both at through the official sales points and online, tickets may only be purchased by ‘siamo noi’ card holders or those who applied for one before 30 March 2012.

All season ticket holders who have not collected their ‘siamo noi’ cards and
have already been to a league match, can no longer avail of this facility if
their card is already available from the agency where it was ordered.

The position of your ‘siamo noi’ card can easily be verified here

We would also like to
remind fans that in order to obtain the free ticket (without a seat number)
reserved for children under the age of seven, each child must have a valid
identity document and be accompanied by an adult.