APPIANO GENTILE –
"Inter is a fantastic club. Not only for me but for any player."
Alvaro Pereira spoke those words with pride on the day he was
presented to the media.
"It would be any player’s dream to be here. My own
dream has certainly come true," the Uruguayan continued. "I’d like to thank
Porto for the three fantastic years I spent there. Porto became like
a second family to me, but here too everyone has been
very supportive from day one and I want to repay people for that on the pitch. I
know everything about this club, about its history and its present.
We’re going through a period of change at the moment but the club has
ambitious plans and we have quality players here. We’ll show people how much we want to win on the long path that awaits us."
Pereira will wear the No. 31 shirt: "It’s a special
number for me. It has a special meaning within my family, that’s why
I chose it."
The Uruguayan was also asked about his position: "I’ll play wherever I’m needed," he replied with a smile. "I’m
basically a left-sided player. I can play at left-back, on the left
wing, or on the left of midfield. At Argentinos Junior, in the
2007/08 season, I played on the wing and I scored 11 goals. But
scoring is not the most important thing, doing your bit to help the
team is. Do I feel ready? Do I feel the pressure? I don’t feel any
pressure and yes I do feel ready. People who have to get up at 6 am
to feed their families are under pressure. Generally speaking I’m
not the sort who likes to talk too much, I prefer to do my talking on
Pereira was also asked to comment on Maicon and Nagatomo:
"A superb player who has given a great deal to this club. But I’m
Alvaro Pereira, a different player. I don’t think it’s right to make
comparisons. All I can say is that I’ll use all the tools at my
disposal to defend these colours. For what little I’ve seen of him,
Nagatomo seems like a fantastic person. It’s nice to meet people from
other countries and other cultures. He’s a versatile player who can
play on both flanks, a quality member of the team. We’re different
but one thing we have in common is that we’re both very fast. We’ll each
make our own contribution."
The Uruguayan then spoke about how his move came about: "Porto were negotiating
with Inter and I was asked if I’d be happy to come to Inter.
There was no doubt in my mind. I said ‘Yes, of course’ instantly."
Naturally there was also mention of the Uruguayan players
who have worn the Nerazzurri shirt in the past: "I know Alvaro
Recoba. I grew up watching him play. I also used to follow Ruben
Sosa’s matches. I’ve spoken to them both, and to Diego Forlan too –
he congratulated me and told me I was coming to a fantastic club and
city. He wasn’t able to give the best of himself at Inter because of the many changes and his injury problems. Which player do I look up to? I’ve always admired Roberto Carlos but as you
grow up you become your own player and I’m Alvaro Pereira."
Pereira’s nickname is El Palito (small stick). He explained: "I was very thin when I was
young, but that’s not the only reason. One day my brother, instead of
saying Alvarito, came out with Alpalito. Since then my friends started
using it and I’ve become quite fond of it."
Now his new team-mates use it too. The same
team-mates that he spoke so well of during his press conference: "I
spoke to Fredy, Pupi, Walter Gargano and others a lot before coming
here. I like sharing things with my team-mates, after all I’ll be
fighting and suffering alongside them. I’m proud to be here at a club I
know all about." Pereira then began reeling off dates, from the club’s foundation up through the team’s
honours and other facts, impressing the Nerazzurri public present.
Welcome to Inter, Alvaro!