APPIANO GENTILE – "I can have all the ideas in the world but it’s the players who put them into practice on the pitch. I’m fortunate to have direct contact with them. Then what’s important is their desire and hunger to perform well and they’ve all shown a great deal of that. But, as I’ve said, the players deserve all the credit because they’re the ones who implement my ideas." Andrea Stramaccioni was keen to highlight this point during his pre-match press conference ahead of Inter’s home game against Partizan.
The coach then answered questions on individual players Fredy Guarin, Joel Obi, Matias Silvestre, Jonathan, Marko Livaja and Esteban Cambiasso.
"Guarin was one of our busiest players on international duty, along with Gargano and Pereira. I could choose from a number of players, all of whom are good, and I’ve picked someone else, but there are no doubts over Guarin’s ability, neither now nor going forward."
Obi is not in the squad to face Partizan, with Stramaccioni saying: "We need to be careful with him. He’s a terrific prospect but we need to make sure we manage his development correctly. He felt a slight twinge in training yesterday, which has nothing to do with his previous injury. Either way we don’t want to risk him tomorrow, then we’ll take our time regarding a decision on Sunday’s match."
The focus then moved to Silvestre and Jonathan: "I’ve said it before and I’ve shown it in my team selection, there’s no one in this squad who I wouldn’t consider picking, no one who’s not seeing much first-team action. Both Silvestre and Jonathan have started big games. There are however players who are in better form than others, and that’s something I consider very important. Picking the same backline is also key. But Matias represents both the present and future. If you think about some of the difficulties Ranocchia had at the start, I think it’s normal Silvestre isn’t playing as much."
Moving up the pitch, Stramaccioni then spoke about Marko Livaja: "He’s a striker, he grew up playing centre forward and he plays the role in a different way. He’s improved in Italy playing out wide on the left and now he’s equally comfortable as the main or support striker. I think it’s right he learns to do both, as well as to play 15-20 metres further back."
"Esteban is playing very well but he’s not been a revelation this season. I believe it’s simply a case of him rediscovering full fitness. He deserves all the credit," Stramaccioni said in response to questions about Cambiasso’s good form.