Spalletti explains Inter improvement

Luciano Spalletti predicted Andrea Ranocchia would score against Rapid Vienna and refutes suggestions Inter improved because of Mauro Icardi’s absence.

The Nerazzurri swept Rapid Vienna aside 4-0, 5-0 on aggregate, and the Coach seemed genuinely pleased for Ranocchia after his sensational volley.

“You can trust Ranocchia, he knows how to handle himself, you can joke around with him and not be worried that there will be some breaching of roles,” Spalletti told Sky Sport Italia.

“We told him today he would play and score a goal. Admittedly, we meant a header from a corner, not a volley from the edge of the box…”

The tactician was asked if the Inter squad had become more united over the last few days, hinting at the absence of ex-captain Icardi.

“It is correct to say that Inter are improving and making fewer errors than before, but it is not fair to allude to something else that happened during this period. Let’s view it from the right angle here, which is that the team is working hard and making fewer mistakes.

“Let’s not talk all the time about this. Let’s focus on the players who were out there today, playing, running, getting kicked and not lose sight of the reality of the situation.

“We are trying to reach this level as our normality, without the ups and downs. We need to get that sorted as soon as possible, because again last season we did well only for spells. It seems like our characteristic that we can’t handle the long run, in a game or over a season, but we must all put the extra effort in to resolve it.

“We saw good things tonight, we had a logical reading of the situation and at times we went deeper to strike on the counter. The players paid close attention to the various moments of the match, adjusting their attitude to find the best approach.

“Balance is key, so Matias Vecino and Marcelo Brozovic do important defensive work to make it easier for the back four. Sometimes we lack quality in the final third and can do better between the lines.”

The draw for the Europa League Round of 16 is tomorrow, so is there anyone Spalletti wants to avoid?

“There are four or five sides who on paper are stronger, but whoever we end up against, we want to keep going along our path.”

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