Luciano Spalletti explained his choices and said the 3-0 victory away to Lazio shows Inter’s renewed ambition, but “we had one decent half.”
Mauro Icardi bagged a brace at the Stadio Olimpico for their sixth consecutive Serie A win, allowing them to catch Napoli in second place.
“The performance is the fundamental thing. We have the possibility to control games the way we did in the first half, whereas in the second we gave the ball away too much, allowed Lazio to cause us problems and in those situations I see a lot of what we shouldn’t do,” Spalletti told Sky Sport Italia.
“This is why I say we’re not the anti-Juve, because if we wander into those errors, we are anti-nobody. We had one decent half, that’s it. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves.
“Anyone who wants to leave things the way they are had better get out of the way. The President has spoken clearly. These are the ambitions of Inter, to have this attitude and control the game at the Stadio Olimpico against a very impressive Lazio.
“The results might not always be like this, but the approach has to be for Inter.”
Icardi scored twice, but Marcelo Brozovic also drilled in a fine goal on top of a strong overall performance.
“I think we have found a key player in Brozovic. He has a compass in his feet, he knows football and has this way of finding a free man with his passes.
“In that role, he has to constantly move the ball and make it difficult for the opposition to be aggressive in their pressing. He has become accustomed to the position now and is really showing what he can do, because he has the quality, the intelligence and the character to play there.”
Spalletti was asked why he left ex-Lazio defender Stefan de Vrij on the bench and chose Joao Mario for his first appearance since January.
“I didn’t think it was fair to play De Vrij when he’d be jeered by the entire stadium, which is what would’ve happened. He is a remarkably sensitive lad and if he’d made a couple of errors, he’d have gone into a spiral.
“With all these games to play, we need everyone. We take into account the effort of the previous match and try to use the best line-up for that situation.
“Joao Mario started to lose the ball a little as time wore on and he got tired. The idea was always to introduce Borja Valero after about an hour.”