UEFA Champions League


Coach Luciano Spalletti held his pre-match press conference at the Phillips Stadion in view of the Champions League encounter between PSV and Inter: “PSV have some different qualities. They are a strong side physically and have top individuals, inspired by their Coach Mark Van Bommel.

“They play good football over in the Netherlands. PSV are an open side who embrace a challenge by getting the most out of their physical qualities and through the pace of their attackers. We’ve prepared well from a mental point of view and now we must get used to matches of this calibre. Winning these type of games gives you confidence but maximum attention and commitment on an individual level is needed to help the team. We started this Champions League in Pot 4 because other teams have done better than us over the past few years. Therefore, we now need to close the gap.”

Spalletti is only thinking about the result: “I’ve never made calculations because I think by doing so it puts you in an awkward position: it transmits the idea of fear and having little confidence in your squad. The best way to approach the match is to aim to win it, always keeping the qualities of the opponent in mind. I have true professionals in my team who are intelligent and will have the right impact on the match. We worked to qualify for the Champions League for the whole of last season, and now we have to prove that we’re up to the task. In terms of tactics, we’ll continue with the ideas that we have been using since the start of this season: there won’t be a lot of upheaval in this regard.”

To finish, Spalletti commented on the physical condition of some players: “D’Ambrosio is in perfect condition. Vrsaljko followed an individual training programme and has already trained a few times with the squad. We still need to consider whether we will use him or not here in Eindhoven.”

(Photo Getty Images)