Saturday April 12 2014
Mazzarri: 'Icardi focus on football'

Walter Mazzarri revealed he spoke to Mauro Icardi ahead of Inter’s soap opera style clash with Sampdoria.

It kicks off on Sunday at 14.00 UK time (13.00 GMT), click here for a match preview.

“There are mistakes, some which help us to improve, others to grow,” said the Coach in his Press conference.

“We talk individually to improve the psychological aspect and every game has something we need to do better from. It’s my work ethic and I have always carried that on.

“Will the team betray me? I don’t think they did, it’s just the result that didn’t go our way. We need to do better at evaluating danger when we’re in control, but generally I think we’ve always done well and can challenge anyone.

“We’ve got to work on ourselves, as too many times we have set the tempo for our own games. I can see how much we create and the performances overall, so in that sense we don’t have a problem.

“When we are playing well and winning, we tend to underestimate danger. It’s something we have to improve on, as if it happens so many times then it means we have an issue in that area.”

Inter were caught in fifth place by Parma and more teams are on their tail, so Europa League qualification is far from guaranteed.

“We are ready in terms of performance, but this is a tricky year. At times on the bench I say that I see things I’ve never experienced before. We all make mistakes, but I don’t want to name names.

“Against Livorno and Bologna we dropped four thoroughly deserved points. I think overall the team rarely didn’t deserve points. We need to be more clinical and that is our hope for these final rounds.”

The match with Sampdoria has the air of a soap opera, as Icardi has spent the week exchanging barbed comments with his former friend and teammate Maxi Lopez.

Icardi is engaged to Lopez’s ex-wife Wanda Nara and now living with his three children in Milan.

“Icardi just needs to focus on football. He has to behave in the most appropriate manner and that is all,” noted Mazzarri.

“As for Mateo Kovacic, he has improved in his tactical focus and his finishing. He will be an important player for us next season too.

“Sinisa Mihajlovic is suspended from the touchline, but I have been a Coach at Sampdoria, so I know that in a game like this the players are already fired up. Presence on the bench is not fundamental.

“I have always worked in transitional periods and it doesn’t frighten me. When there are victories, everything seems to be fine. When there aren’t any results, everyone can cling to absentees and Presidents ask you for more after the game.

“From pre-season next year I intend to train the team in 4-3-2-1 or 4-3-1-2 systems as well, so we can be more versatile.”

Honorary President Massimo Moratti visited the training ground this week and spoke to the Coach.

“His presence was important, as always. We often talk on the phone too.”

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