Zanetti: ‘Lautaro Martinez will remain at Inter’


Inter vice president Javier Zanetti insists that fans don’t need to worry as Lautaro Martinez will remain at the club. The Nerazzurri president gave a lengthy interview to  ‘Supertele’ on DAZN (via CM.com) and shared insights across various topics, making significant statements that offer a glimpse into the club’s future:

REFLECTIONS ON THE SCUDETTO CELEBRATIONS – “The joy of the fans remains foremost, alongside the journey from the season’s start to clinching the championship. Inzaghi and his team have done tremendous work, aware of their strength, but it needed to be demonstrated on the field, and Inter proved with character and gameplay to be the strongest.”

WAS INZAGHI’S POSITION EVER IN DOUBT? – “Not from our side, but there was a moment of difficulty. The results, especially in the league, were not forthcoming.”

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL LOSS TO MANCHESTER CITY – “Reaching the final was a great achievement. Then Manchester City was the favorite; it was said they would win easily. However, there’s still a lingering regret because victory was within reach. From that match, we exited with the awareness of being a strong team capable of competing for significant achievements.”

IMPACT OF SIMONE INZAGHI – “Huge. He brought his ideas. The team played well and entertained because all players were at their best; the coach provided this serenity and awareness of being a strong team. His voice? In the last few games, Farris took over (laughs). He puts in a lot of effort because he cares, and the players followed him in everything, reflected in their attitude on the field in every match.”

HAKAN CALHANOGLU AS A REGISTA – “He accepted this significant challenge and new role; Inzaghi trusted him, and Calhanoglu felt like a protagonist, both defensively and offensively.”

MARCUS THURAM’S ARRIVAL – “Ausilio and Baccin were smart to track him for a long time. He also had a knee injury; we waited for him because we had great confidence in Thuram. When you arrive in a league like ours, especially as a forward, it’s tough. But he immediately clicked with Lautaro Martinez and was decisive.”

ANY REGRETS ABOUT LUKAKU? – “Lukaku’s skill is undeniable; we won a championship with Conte where he was instrumental. Then he made his choice, and we acknowledged it. No one expected it timing-wise; if he had told us earlier, we would have had a different strategy. It was a great challenge for us to find alternative forwards; we did well, creating a group with important values, also human.”

LAUTARO MARTINEZ’S FUTURE – “Lauti is content. Inter is his family, and he demonstrates it, showing a sense of belonging. He played the captain’s role exemplary. Connection with the old Inter? When Milito worked at Racing, we followed him; I spoke with Diego, and he said Lautaro was strong. A surprise was a game where he scored three goals, and after the match, he said he was very happy for the goals, but not for his performance. A boy of 18 who responds like that makes you reflect.”

IMPROVING AN ALMOST PERFECT INTER – “Many from the bench were crucial? They ensure the starters work well. All the guys felt important; whoever came in contributed. Carlos Augusto, Darmian, very intelligent and important players. Everyone wanted to stand out; we won many matches ultimately for this reason. Frattesi scored decisive goals. The most challenging thing is to continue. How? By working, in the same way. We won an important championship, but we still want to be competitive, defend what we have won. The prerequisites are there; there’s an important human group.”

THE STRENGTH OF THE CLUB – “We see the opportunities that arise. To win, you must build a team off the field that works at the same level as the one on the field. When you win, it’s easy; there are always moments of difficulty. We spoke earlier about Inzaghi’s difficult moments; there, the club must support him.”

STEVEN ZHANG – “We are in permanent contact; he asks us how things are going. He was very happy and sorry not to be there. When you see a functioning club, I believe he is also calm because the club is in good hands.”

WHAT KIND OF MARKET WILL IT BE? CAN INTER CLOSE THE GAP WITH EUROPEAN GIANTS? – “Gap with Manchester City? Watching the final, it seems like there isn’t one. In reality, with the revenues in the Premier League today, we cannot compete, but out of challenge, we must find alternatives, bring in players functional to what the coach and we want, who know how to wear Inter’s shirt, which lives on pressures and objectives. Those we have taken proved us right, and we hope that those who arrive will enrich the team.”

ELIMINATION AGAINST ATLETICO MADRID – “There’s always a lesson to be learned. There’s still regret because there was an opportunity we didn’t exploit; both in the first leg and the return leg, we had chances. The Champions League is a matter of details, especially against tough teams like Atletico. You learn.”

GIFTING A NEW BANDIERA TO ITALIAN FOOTBALL – “It would be beautiful because it means that one is doing well and cares. Lautaro has been with us for six years now. Bastoni, Dimarco, Barella, they are all players who, when you watch them play and hear them talk, have our values. I would love for them to have a long career with us. It’s normal that big clubs come to see them. Then, even in the face of a lot of money, one can decide that they are happy here and stay. Players who have had an extraordinary season naturally receive calls, but our tranquility is that if you hear the guys talk, they are all very happy to stay. Next year we will have the Champions League with many games, the Club World Cup, defending the Scudetto… We will have to build a great team.”

DIMARCO – “Fede grew up with us; then he went elsewhere and now he’s back. You can see the class he has; he’s an Interista inside, and you can see it from what he does on the field and also off with the chants (laughs).”

MAURO ICARDI – “Do I still hear from him? I think it’s possible that he had the desire to become a flag. It’s been a while since I heard from him, but when he returns to Milan, I’m happy to see him.”

MIGHT A BIG PLAYER BE SACRIFICED? – “We don’t have to start a cycle; our cycle has begun. In the last 4-5 years, we have won two Scudetti, Supercups, Italian Cups, a Champions League final, and a Europa League final.”

THE MILAN SCUDETTO OF 2022 – “A great opportunity that can happen. They were smart to believe in it until the end and they won it.”

FROM THE FIELD TO THE DESK – “Off the field, you suffer more, but being part of this makes me very happy.”

JOSE MOURINHO – “I hear from him. Now he’s calm. De Rossi is doing a great job in Rome. I was sorry because I know how much José cares about his teams; he didn’t expect to be let go like that, but it’s part of football.”

EMOTION LIKE NEVER BEFORE, EVEN WITH THE TREBLE – “There was the second star, the derby with Milan… Fans didn’t expect these celebrations, and they took to the streets with us; it’s right. The boys are realizing they’ve written one of the most important pages in the club’s history.”

HOW MUCH DO YOU FEEL ITALIAN, AND HOW DO YOU SEE ITALY IN THE EUROS? – “Now I feel Italian; Italy is my country without forgetting Argentina. National team? Spalletti will have to do a great job; it won’t be easy. They missed the last two World Cups, and nobody expected that after winning the Euros. I hope they make it and qualify for the next World Cup.”

NAPOLI’S DECLINE – “Nobody expected it. At the beginning of the year, I put them among the protagonists.”

MOST IMPROVED PLAYER – “Carlos Augusto surprised me. I didn’t know him that well. Physically, very intelligent, you never see him struggling. You always see his personality. I really like Darmian; wherever you put him, he does well. Frattesi had this desire to break everything every time he came on.”

THE DEFEAT AGAINST SASSUOLO: HOW MUCH DID IT ANNOY INZAGHI? – “It annoyed everyone. Inzaghi, the players, us. Sassuolo found the goal and managed to win; we had chances. We want to do our best. Everyone was angry after the defeat.”

LAUTARO: CAN FANS BE QUIET FOR NEXT YEAR? – “They can be calm. Will he still be Inter’s captain? Yes.”

IS MILAN, JUVENTUS, ROMA, OR NAPOLI MORE FEARED AS A CONTENDER? – “No fear, respect for all. Confirming ourselves will be very difficult, but we have this desire.”

THE NEXT DREAM – “Raising another Champions League as an executive would be fantastic.”


Serie A obsessive.