Spalletti: ‘Inter in the Scudetto race’

Luciano Spalletti won’t shy away from stating Inter “are in the Scudetto race and ready to take on anyone” ahead of the trip to Sassuolo.

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The Nerazzurri reinforced arguably even more than Juventus this summer, bringing in the likes of Radja Nainggolan, Stefan de Vrij, Keita Balde Diao, Sime Vrsaljko, Kwadwo Asamoah and Lautaro Martinez.

“We’re emerging out of the factory without the need for any more road tests, as we are ready to take on anyone,” said the Coach in his Press conference.

“That means we must go for the victory against anybody. Sassuolo have a good record against us and this has always been a difficult fixture, so it’ll be tough again tomorrow, but the summer is over and the games all count now.”

Nainggolan is out injured, while Milan Skriniar is likely to be benched due to a fitness issue.

“I feel that I have a stronger side this season not just because of the new arrivals, but also as we know each other better and have a clearer idea of our objectives. We’ve got to improve last term’s fourth place.

“Nobody intends to hand Juventus the Scudetto before we’ve even started playing. Inter, Napoli, Roma, Milan and Lazio can all challenge for the Scudetto, because we have all strengthened. We are one of the five sides who could challenge Juve for the title and then we’ll see what happens.

“I am glad that we brought in players of quality and solidity, of the right level to play for Inter. We feel confident for the future. I dealt with pressure in the past, now it’s all joy and excitement.

“Serie A has brought in players who before would’ve been more attracted to La Liga or the Premier League, but now Italian football is seen as an opportunity again and that is fundamental.

“We’re satisfied with all of that, but now we’ve got to bring home points starting from tomorrow. Last season it was all decided in the final 20 minutes, so if we learn our lesson from that, we can get the points earlier and not leave it so late.”

Finally, Spalletti wanted to clarify his position on Joao Mario, who has been linked with moves to Schalke 04, Real Betis, Sevilla and Rubin Kazan.

“Joao Mario is not in the squad due to a muscular problem and is not frozen out, despite what some might say. I pick the team and I can tell you he is not frozen out.”

Inter squad for Sassuolo: Handanovic, Berni, Vrsaljko, De Vrij, Ranocchia, Asamoah, Miranda, Dalbert, D’Ambrosio, Skriniar, Gagliarini, Vecino, Borja Valero, Brozovic, Karamoh, Icardi, Lautaro Martinez, Keita Balde, Politano, Perisic, Candreva

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