Friday November 18 2011
Ballardini wary of Inter’s strength

Davide Ballardini has warned his Cagliari players of Inter’s strength as they prepare to visit San Siro this weekend.

The message from the new Rossoblu Coach comes as he prepares for his third stint in charge of the Sardinian outfit, and despite his new side finding themselves seven League positions and five points better off than the Nerazzurri.

“I know that in recent weeks they have been training well and have recovered some important players. Inter is always a great team. They are playing at home and it will not be easy.

“Usually you can find some benefit to when you meet a team that is in the Champions League, after they have played three games in a row, but it is not our case as Inter have not played for more than two weeks.”

Ballardini replaced Massimo Ficcadenti to become Cagliari’s third Coach of the season with just 10 games played. The 47-year-old reflected on the expectancy on the role.

“Of course, playing San Siro is always a special occasion, but the emotions are those of Cagliari and there is always an awareness in training of responsibility, because Cagliari is not only a city but an entire region.”

The Isolani suffered a blow in training this week with the news that Andrea Cossu is likely to miss the trip to Milan through injury. Speaking of his intentions for the side, the Coach refused to identify individuals likely to come in for the influential playmaker.

“We will play with the 4-3-1-2, I do not think there is a case for changing this as the team has its own identity and will move forward with that.

“I do not have many midfielders so it is not difficult to guess who will play instead of Cossu. It will be a player with characteristics different to his, but the role is that and I expect them to know that and to tie the game in midfield and attack, to give balance and attack without the ball.”

Cagliari go into this weekend fixture having not scored from open play in the last five League games, with just one penalty contributing to the Goals For column since the end of Week 6.

 “We’re fine, we trained well during the break and I am convinced that the attack will be better.

“It’s not a matter of attackers, it is that the team as a whole must be more clever and more effective in attacking in front of goal.”