Simone Inzaghi says he is "not worried" about Lautaro Martinez's future, with the Inter skipper yet to sign a new contract at San Siro.

The Argentina international, who is under contract until 2026, was the top scorer in Serie A with 24 goals, as the Nerazzurri claimed their 20th Scudetto after finishing 19 points clear of second-place Milan.

Inter are now under new ownership with American firm Oaktree completing their takeover of the club from Suning last week.

The future of Lautaro will be high on the agenda when Inzaghi meets with the new owners this week, with the skipper's salary demands reportedly delaying negotiations, but the head coach is confident the situation will be resolved.

"I am not worried because I know the club," he said. "Although the owners have changed, the directors have maintained continuity and will continue to do so."

Inter concluded a memorable campaign with a 2-2 draw at Verona on Sunday, with Marko Arnautovic's double securing a point, and Inzaghi saluted his players' efforts.

"We didn't hide ourselves this season," he said. "We said our objective was the second star. We wanted it so badly, knowing that the other four, five, or six contenders wanted the same. We were the best in Italy."

When asked if the Champions League was the club's main target next season, he added: "We know what it means to play so many games. We know it won't be easy, but we'll prepare in the best way."

Clinical Inter returned to winning ways with a 5-0 thrashing of relegation-threatened Frosinone on Friday, and coach Simone Inzaghi admitted he had no questions left following his side's stellar performance.

Champions Inter stumbled to a 1-0 loss at relegation-battling Sassuolo last weekend but bounced back at Frosinone when five different players were on target to further hamper Frosinone's hopes of steering away from the relegation zone.

"I got the answers I wanted even though there was no need [for them]," Inzaghi told a press conference.

"A lot of guys who have played less answered and even contributed with a goal, I'm thinking about [Tajon] Buchanan and [Marko] Arnautovic.

"Important answers also came from [Kristjan] Asllani, who has grown a lot and has also played parts in important games."

Inter, who remained on track to beat the club record of 97 points set in the 2006-07 season, have also equalled the 15 away wins recorded in that season and maintained their 10th clean sheet, previously seen in 2007-08.

"I have a club that has been working for some time to ensure that the team improves because we always have to grow," Inzaghi said when asked if the team would be able to keep up the pace next season.

"Now we have two matches in which we will do our best, and then we will think about next season.

"The celebration? What our fans did to us will always remain within each of us. It's the shield of joy. I will always thank the fans."

Inzaghi is set to remain at Inter, with Italian media reporting he has already agreed to a new deal which puts him at the helm of the club beyond 2025.

He added: "You know what relationship I have with the club. We will all sit down and talk, but we are already in contact every day."

Champions Inter Milan hammered relegation-battling Frosinone 5-0 in Serie A on Friday, with Simone Inzaghi's side securing their biggest winning margin this season.

Davide Frattesi opened the scoring for Inter in the 19th minute, sending the ball in with his knee from a Marcus Thuram pass, which deflected off one of Frosinone's defenders.

Marko Arnautovic doubled the lead for Inter at the hour mark with a low first-time finish into the middle of the goal and Tajon Buchanan made it 3-0 with his debut Inter goal, before substitute Lautaro Martinez and Thuram sealed the win.

Inter, who on Saturday suffered their second league defeat of the campaign when they were beaten 1-0 by second-from-bottom Sassuolo, also maintained their chances to beat the club record of 97 points set in the 2006-07 season.

Currently on 92 points, they next host Lazio on May 19 before ending the season at lowly Hellas Verona.

Frosinone sit 17th on 32 points with two points separating them from the relegation zone before 18th-placed Udinese travel to Lecce on Monday.

Data Debrief: Goals, goals, goals

Inter scored three goals in the final 15 minutes of the match - the Nerazzurri have now scored 21 goals in that period this season, more than any other team in the league.

With this win, the Nerazzurri have now won 4600 points in Serie A (since 1929-30), becoming only the second team to reach this milestone in the competition's history after Juventus.

Simone Inzaghi admits "it hurts to lose" following Inter's surprise 1-0 defeat by relegation-threatened Sassuolo.

The newly crowned Scudetto winners suffered only their second loss of the season in Serie A, as Armand Lauriente's first-half goal was enough to give the 19th-place hosts victory at Mapei Stadium.

Sassuolo, who boosted their survival hopes, subsequently completed the league double over the Nerazzurri, having also prevailed 2-1 at San Siro in September.

Meanwhile, Inter were beaten by a team in the bottom two for the first time since November 2014, with Inzaghi urging his players not to be distracted by their title triumph.

"We started sluggish and didn’t have the right approach to the game," he told Sky Sports Italia. "I'm sorry for the defeat, but credit must be given to Sassuolo for a performance of great effort and sacrifice.

"It's right to enjoy [our Scudetto victory], but there are still three games to go and we have to focus. It hurts to lose, and it should hurt."

After guiding Inter to their 20th Serie A crown, Inzaghi is hopeful he can keep the majority of his squad intact ahead of next season.

However, the Nerazzurri boss did emphasise the club's need to strengthen before launching their Scudetto defence.

"I already told the club that I want to go into next season with all the players I had this term, not losing a single one," he said. "Considering all the games we need to play and the length of the season, we do need a bigger squad."

 

Inter suffered only their second defeat in Serie A this season as a first-half goal by Armand Lauriente gave relegation-threatened Sassuolo a crucial 1-0 victory.

Sassuolo have a unique hold over Simone Inzaghi's side this season, as the only team to beat Inter in the league, having secured a 2-1 victory in the reverse fixture in September.

The result was a big boost in Sassuolo's battle against relegation, as they sit second from bottom on 29 points, with only three points between them and Cagliari in 14th place.

Lauriente got the only goal of the match after 20 minutes when Josh Doig managed to wrestle the ball back from Denzel Dumfries near the corner flag and pulled it back, with Sassuolo's matchwinner on hand to slot into the net from close range.

Data Debrief: Long time coming

This was the first time Inter have lost a league match against a team in the bottom two of the standings since way back in November 2014. On that occasion, they went down 2-0 to Parma.

Lauriente, meanwhile, has scored four Serie A goals since the beginning of April, a joint-record in the period in the top-flight (level with Hakan Calhanoglu).

Simone Inzaghi has set and maintained high standards at Inter, so says his Nerazzurri assistant Massimiliano Farris.

Inter clinched their 20th Serie A title by beating fierce rivals Milan in Monday's derby.

That meant that Sunday's home meeting with Torino was something of a celebration for Inter and their fans, and the team delivered with a 2-0 victory.

Hakan Calhanoglu scored both of Inter's goals, and Farris, who spoke to the media instead of his boss, piled the praise on Inzaghi.

In quotes reported by Football Italia, Farris told DAZN: "We've tried to build a positive environment. We lost important players [last summer], but we welcomed important players who made themselves loved.

"Going to the pitch and working this season was a pleasure. We had a lot of fun and it's the players' merit.

"We are Inter, we have great value, and we couldn't afford to lose games like we used to. He's our leader, he kept a high bar in difficult moments.

"Today, we are repaid for everything, and we can enjoy more of what happened in the previous two years. In football, defeats [hurt] more than victories, but now we must enjoy this moment."

With victory over Milan, Inzaghi became the second-fastest coach to reach 600 points in Serie A, after Carlo Ancelotti.

Farris added: "Simone already said it in the previous interviews. We’ve been fighting for every target across the last three years. We have won cups, we reached a Champions League final.

"We are aware that in the first season, we missed something that we could have taken home [the title].

"Perhaps it was the price to pay, as staff members, when you get to a club like this, but I think this season's achievements give value to all other trophies.

"Today's atmosphere was incredible, so good. Ninety minutes and more of celebrations and it was fair to start those who have brought the team here. This doesn't mean the others didn't contribute. On the contrary, everyone was helpful, I should name them all. I wouldn't even call them reserves."

Inter Milan go in search of the first of successive wins they need to wrap up the Serie A title on Sunday.

Cagliari are the visitors to San Siro and victory will mean Simone Inzaghi’s men can wrap up their first Scudetto in three years with a three-point return against their city rivals AC Milan in their following match on April 22.

Inter maintained their 14-point advantage over second-placed Milan on Monday, with Davide Frattesi’s late winner completing a come-from-behind victory at an Udinese side who had won just once at home all season.

Inzaghi had an eye on the remaining seven fixtures after that match when he said: “We’re playing clubs fighting against relegation or for the top spots… We can’t let our concentration slip.”

The Nerazzurri have won 12 and drawn one of their 13 matches since the turn of the year and have been beaten only once in the competition since the start of the season – a shock home loss to struggling Sassuolo in September the only blemish in an impressive campaign.

However, the leaders, who have scored in every match, will be without top goalscorer Lautaro Martinez against Cagliari because of suspension.

The Sardinians’ knack of picking up points from losing positions has aided their bid for survival.

Ten points from their last five matches have lifted Cagliari four points clear of the relegation zone as they bid to avoid an immediate return to the second tier of Italian football.

The last time they won this contest was in 2016 as two goals in the final 19 minutes turned the contest on its head against an Inter side who finished fourth, a distant 24 points behind champions Juventus.

However, Claudio Ranieri’s team are not at their best away from home in the current campaign.

They have picked up just seven points from their 15 games and netted a league-low nine goals on their travels.

Inter Milan and Napoli will both look to put Champions League disappointment behind them when they meet in Serie A on Sunday.

Napoli exited the competition in the last 16 on Tuesday, beaten 4-2 on aggregate by Barcelona, and a day later Inter lost out to Atletico Madrid on penalties following a 2-2 draw.

The result was a bitter pill to swallow for the runaway Serie A leaders, who were on a run of 13 consecutive victories in all competitions and had hoped to go one better than last season, when they were beaten in the Champions League final by Manchester City.

Inter went two up in the tie but Atletico fought back to level through Memphis Depay’s goal late in normal time and, after missed chances for Simone Inzaghi’s side in extra-time, they missed three of their five penalties, with Lautaro Martinez sending the final effort high over the bar.

Inter seem certain to lift silverware this season domestically, going into the weekend 16 points clear of nearest rivals AC Milan.

And Inzaghi said on the club website: “The lads have to be proud of what they’ve done. It’s normal to be disappointed, because it’s a shame when it comes down to penalties.

“Now we’ve got 10 Serie A matches we need to play well to try to reach that crucial goal of ours. We’ve got to try and recover physically and mentally to give it our best shot against the reigning champions. We’ll try and do our best.”

Napoli’s title defence has been distinctly underwhelming and they are sweating on the fitness of striker Victor Osimhen, who missed training for two days this week with a muscle problem.

They have not given up hope of forcing their way into the European places, with victory over Juventus earlier this month a much-needed boost, although they were then held at home by Torino.

Napoli are on their third manager of the season in Francesco Calzona, who was appointed until the end of the campaign last month and also holds the position of Slovakia coach.

He insisted he is not concerned about his future, saying on Sky Sports Italia: “Let’s think about the championship, there are many games and we have to cradle the dream of catching up with the teams that are ahead of us.

“It’s difficult, but mathematics doesn’t condemn us. As for me, my future is the last thing on my mind. The boys are working hard and giving me a lot, I think we’ve made a small step forward.”

Inter Milan extended their lead at the top of Serie A with a hard-fought 1-0 win at Bologna.

With closest challengers Juventus not in action until Sunday, Simone Inzaghi’s side took full advantage to move 18 points clear.

Yann Bisseck’s first-half header proved enough for a 14th straight victory in all competitions to end Bologna’s own winning run.

The Nerazzurri started brightly, with Alexis Sanchez forcing Bologna goalkeeper Lukasz Skorupski into an early save at the near post before Matteo Darmian sent a left-footed shot wide.

Nicolo Barella then fired straight at Skorupski after collecting a loose ball on the edge of the penalty area and Carlos Augusto’s angled drive was well saved.

Bologna threatened when Scotland midfielder Lewis Ferguson called Yann Sommer into action with a long-range effort and then Alexis Saelemaekers curled his shot just wide.

Inter finally made the breakthrough in the 37th minute when centre-back Alessandro Bastoni clipped a pass over from the left through the area toward the back post, where Bisseck headed the ball down and into the net.

It was almost 2-0 just before half-time when Darmian sent the ball across the face of goal towards Barella, but Bologna defender Victor Kristiansen managed to make a sliding block.

Bologna regrouped at the break and went close to levelling soon after the restart when Jens Odgaard sent Stefan Posch away down the right and his angled drive back across goal flew just wide of the far post.

Inter boss Simone Inzaghi looked to freshen up his side again following the hour mark, with Kristjan Asllani and Davide Frattesi sent on.

Former Bologna striker Marko Arnautovic came off the bench after 66 minutes, which was greeted by some jeers from the home support at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara.

Bologna, who had won their last six matches to climb to fourth in the table, continued to press Inter back as Ferguson cut inside and drilled a shot wide.

With 12 minutes left, Joshua Zirkzee forced a brilliant reaction save from Sommer before substitute Riccardo Orsolini headed wide from a corner as Inter saw out the closing stages.

Arnautovic went down in stoppage time, appearing to pull a hamstring, and had to be helped off the pitch with an injury which could leave him doubtful for next week’s Champions League last-16 second-leg clash at Atletico Madrid.

Bologna will look to land another blow on Serie A champions elect Inter Milan at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara on Saturday.

Inter head into the weekend 15 points clear of second-placed Juventus and are bidding for a 13th straight victory in all competitions, but Bologna have been something of a bogey side.

This will be a third meeting of the season between the teams, with Bologna fighting back to draw 2-2 at San Siro in the league in October and then handing Inter their most recent defeat, in the Coppa Italia in December.

Bologna, who also won the home league match last season, go into this clash in great form having won their last six matches to climb to fourth in the table, earning former Inter midfielder Motta the Serie A manager of the month award.

He told a press conference: “Inter are the favourites in Serie A, they reached the Champions League final last season, so we have great respect for our opponents. I admire (manager Simone) Inzaghi a great deal.

“All teams have weaknesses. There is no team that is unbeatable, although clearly at this level there are fewer weak spots.

“We are where we belong considering all that we’ve done so far, not just in the matches, but in training too. The lads know we have to keep the same attitude right to the end. Our fans cheer us on and we are ready for a great performance against what is at the moment the best team in the league.

“Against Inter we need to do everything we’ve done so far, but also something extra.”

Bologna’s terrific season, which has so far seen them out perform the likes of defending champions Napoli, Roma and Lazio, has seen Motta linked with big clubs across Europe.

He played down the speculation, saying: “I am 1,000 per cent focused on the Inter match. The president is very happy enjoying the present and so am I, without thinking too much about the future.”

The match will see Marko Arnautovic return to Bologna for the first time since his transfer to Inter last summer.

“I think everyone benefited from that transfer,” said Motta. “He wanted to go to Inter, a choice that I absolutely respect, and now is playing in the Champions League and challenging for the Scudetto. We in turn are happy with how our season is going.”

Inzaghi is also celebrating having been announced as the winner of the Bearzot award for the best manager in Italian football.

Inzaghi said of the award, which is named after Italy’s 1982 World Cup-winning coach Enzo Bearzot, in La Gazzetta dello Sport: “I am deeply grateful for this prestigious award named after such a great coach and man of football.

“This recognition would not have been possible without the extraordinary support of all those who have worked with me over the years. I dedicate this award to them and to my family.”

Inter Milan boss Simone Inzaghi called on his side to continue playing with “speed, aggression and determination” ahead of their clash against Genoa.

Runaway Serie A leaders Inter are aiming to continue their perfect start to 2024 on Monday night.

They extended their winning streak to 11 games in all competitions this calendar year with a 4-0 victory against Atalanta on Wednesday and Inzaghi hopes Inter can keep the run going.

He told Inter TV: “We have done our best in the last two months but we know that tomorrow is a difficult game, there will be many others too and we need to continue playing with speed, aggression, and determination.”

The last time Inter dropped points came against Monday’s opponents in December when defender Radu Dragusin – who has since left Genoa for Tottenham – cancelled out Marko Arnautovic’s opener in a 1-1 draw.

Genoa are 12th in the table and have also claimed draws against top-four sides Juventus and Bologna as well as reigning champions Napoli this season.

Their last outing saw them return to winning ways with a 2-0 victory over Udinese and Inzaghi insisted Inter need to remain “extremely focused”.

“It will be a difficult game. Genoa is a good side, they have 33 points, and they’re having a good season,” he said.

“In the last 12 games, I think they’ve only lost to Atalanta in the final minutes, they’re in good form and we need to face them with focus.

“Genoa covers the pitch very well, they are good in attack and defence.

“We will need to be extremely focused, and technically clean whilst trying to play our usual game.”

Inzaghi also confirmed that there will be changes to the squad ahead of the match.

He added: “There will be some changes, some rotation.

“I am lucky to have players who are ready, unfortunately some could still be out tomorrow, but we have seen that you won’t always have everyone available when you play this much and everyone involved has given me great results”.

Inter Milan head coach Simone Inzaghi is aware of the potential pitfalls facing his team in their Supercoppa Italiana final showdown with Napoli in Riyadh as the Nerazzurri look to make a statement with a mid-season trophy.

Inzaghi’s went into the weekend leading the Serie A table by two points from Juventus and they breezed into Monday’s cup tournament decider in the Saudi Arabian capital by dispatching Lazio 3-0 on Friday.

Standing in their way are Scudetto holders Napoli, who also won 3-0 – against Fiorentina – to give themselves a confidence boost with their league form desperately poor compared to their swashbuckling final season under Luciano Spalletti.

The more pragmatic Walter Mazzarri is now in charge of the Azzurri and there will be a definite clash of styles in Riyadh as attack-minded Inzaghi looks to secure Inter their eighth Super Cup and third in succession.

“A final is often decided in a few moments – you have to be very careful,” the Nerazzurri boss told inter.it. “We’re playing against the Italian champions who won 3-0 in their own semi-final.

“They’ve had some problems in the league but they have a lot of quality, with a deep squad.

“Napoli have changed their formation, before they were a possession team but now they are less so. If Mazzarri keeps his line-up from the semi-final then we’ll be ready for that. Beyond formation and tactics, though, motivation is vital.”

On Inter’s and his own fine record in the Super Cup – he has won five overall as player and coach – Inzaghi added: “Winning it three times in a row has only happened once before. We won it in a derby (against AC Milan) last year, two years ago against Juve, and now we would like to beat Napoli to it.

“I care more about Inter than my own record. It would be nice to win it of course. The boys have been putting Inter before their own interests since the summer and that’s the secret to a good team.”

Napoli boss Mazzarri hopes winning the Super Cup will give his players an incentive to revive their ailing domestic campaign and qualify for the Champions League.

He told La Gazzetta dello Sport: “This is a bunch of good young guys who need to understand that an opportunity like this might not happen again – and that should drive them on.

“I believe we will face an Inter team who are currently at their best. It will be very tough but, also for that reason, winning would give us even more confidence for the future.”

Jens Cajuste and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia are both suspended for Napoli, who are also missing star striker Victor Osimhen due to Africa Cup of Nations commitments.

Inter are in better shape with only Taty Castellanos sitting the fixture out due to injury.

Simone Inzaghi has challenged his Inter Milan players to lift the Supercoppa Italiana for a third straight season as they take on the new format for the first time.

The competition has been expanded to four teams, with the runners-up from both Serie A and the Coppa Italia added to the mix.

With all games being played in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Coppa Italia holders Inter will face Serie A runners-up Lazio on Friday, with the winner advancing to play either league champions Napoli or cup runners-up Fiorentina.

“The Supercoppa is the first objective of the season,” Inzaghi said. “Inter won it in the last two years and we want to win it again. We’ll do our best.

“We have another training session and I need to make careful assessments (on the squad). Everyone was available yesterday, except (Juan) Cuadrado. I have to make decisions, being a final played over two legs.

“Now, I am only thinking about the Lazio game. I am serene, Inter have the same ambitions as Lazio, Napoli and Fiorentina. Tomorrow, we meet an undefeated team in the last five, and it has always caused trouble for us.”

Lautaro Martinez scored a brace in Inter’s 5-1 Serie A win over Monza last weekend, moving to 20 goals in all competitions for the season.

But while the Argentinian has been in sparkling form, Inter have been linked with a striker in the January window – something Inzaghi would not be drawn on.

“We have a club behind us that is thinking about it,” he said. “I am satisfied with my four strikers in the first part of the season, they are giving us great satisfaction.”

Leading the line for Lazio will be veteran forward Ciro Immobile. The 33-year-old was linked with making Saudi Arabia his permanent home last summer, but asked on Thursday if he would still be interested in joining the Saudi Pro League, he said he was fully focused on Lazio.

“(Saudi Arabia) is developing as a league, infrastructures are improving compared to 2019,” Immobile said.

“Now, everyone has their eyes set on Saudi Arabia and believes there will be an important league here in the future. I spoke to local clubs in the past, but nothing happened in the end. I’ve always tried to be as transparent as possible and I decided to stay at Lazio and carry the project forward.”

Immobile was a late substitute in Lazio’s 1-0 win over Lecce as he comes back from injury.

“We feel the weight of the game,” he added. “It’s a trophy with two finals that are played within three days. There is little time to prepare for all matches. We are proud and happy with what we did last season and want to enjoy this moment.

“I was sidelined for three weeks, but playing 15 minutes against Lecce was important. I’ve had the chance to train and work to return to the top. We only lacked consistency, but the team has always worked well. Sometimes things didn’t work, but we’ve been improving.”

Inter Milan were forced to settle for second place in Champions League Group D after a 0-0 draw with leaders Real Sociedad at San Siro.

Last year’s runners-up needed a win to clinch a place among the top seeds heading into the knockout stage but could not break down their impressive Spanish opponents.

A second draw between the sides in the group stage left them locked together with 12 points, but La Real – who conceded just twice in their six matches – topped the pool on goal difference.

The draw did mean both teams kept up their impressive recent runs, with Inter having now gone 14 games without defeat.

Real Sociedad are now unbeaten in eight and have still only lost to Real Madrid, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid in all competitions this season.

And it was the visitors who dominated possession early on but, other than a couple of promising runs from Take Kubo, they failed to seriously test the visiting defence.

Inter were happy to hit on the break and they came closest to scoring in a first half of few chances.

The lively Marcus Thuram caused problems, and his surging run created an opening for Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but his goalbound effort was brilliantly cleared by Sociedad defender Hamari Traore.

Federico Dimarco then forced a save out of visiting goalkeeper Alex Remiro just before the interval.

Davide Frattesi fired over 10 minutes into the second half after La Real did not deal with a long throw, before Juan Cuadrado drove narrowly wide.

Simone Inzaghi brought on top-scorer Lautaro Martinez, midfielder Nicolo Barella and Marko Arnautovic with 25 minutes to go as Inter chased a winner which would have clinched top spot.

But they were forced into some defending five minutes later, with former Manchester United defender Matteo Darmian blocking an effort from Arsen Zakharyan before Inter goalkeeper Yann Sommer smothered Mikel Oyarzabal’s shot.

Real Sociedad thought they had a penalty with 15 minutes left when Kubo went down in the area but a VAR review led to referee Sandro Scharer overturning his decision.

Sommer had to save from Oyarzabal again to keep Inter’s hopes alive.

Inter poured forward as they looked for a late winner and they created a stoppage-time chance for Martinez. But the Argentina World Cup winner opted to go for goal himself from a tight angle instead of looking for a team-mate and and he could only lash his shot high over the crossbar.

Frosinone coach Eusebio Di Francesco feels his side will have to play beyond their limits when they face the “most complete” team Inter Milan at the San Siro on Sunday.

The Nerazzurri secured a place in the Champions League knockout stages with a 1-0 win away at RB Salzburg on Wednesday night, which was a fifth-straight victory through all competitions.

Simone Inzaghi’s side, though, were knocked off the top of Serie A after Juventus beat Cagliari on Saturday.

Frosinone, who were promoted to the top flight this season, got themselves back on track last weekend with victory over Empoli, having lost back-to-back league games.

Canaries coach Di Francesco, though, is all too aware of just what challenge awaits his side at the San Siro.

“I believe that in order to compete with Inter we will have to outdo ourselves,” Di Francesco said.

“Inter are the most complete team, they are difficult to face and a club who have given continuity to the work of their coach.

“He has many weapons at his disposal, they are so difficult to deal with from all points of view.

“But what is most scary about Inter is the awareness, the knowledge they have among themselves which makes them a tough team to beat.

“If so far we have put in 10 out of 10, now to be able to compete with this Inter we will have to put in, I won’t say double, but come close.

“We must go and play this match with the same enthusiasm we have had so far.”

Despite the challenges ahead, Di Francesco wants his side to stay true to the values which have helped push them towards the top half of the table.

“In terms of the characteristics of the players who will be involved, the right solutions must be chosen, but we must not lose our identity and our principles of play,” said Di Francesco, who took over the newly-promoted side in the summer following the departure of Fabio Grosso.

“We must rely on the fact of enthusiasm, of the great desire to go and play the match.”

The Frosinone coach told a press conference: “I don’t share the concept that it’s not possible to face Inter with a smile and try to have fun – factors that will have to accompany us until the end of the championship this season.”

Di Francesco feels his players must focus on their collective goal, rather than get swept up in the occasion.

“I tried to tell my boys that when you enter the pitch in any stadium the strength lies in putting two plugs in your ears and to just focus on your team’s goal,” he said.

“That is what I did this week too, I didn’t give much weight to the match itself.

“I made it clear that we will have a strong team to fight against, however that doesn’t mean just standing behind them, but we must also be trying to fight back.”

Inter coach Inzaghi did not hold a media conference ahead of Sunday’s Serie A fixture.

Inzaghi is expected to recall Nicolo Barella after the midfielder did not feature in the Champions League.

Nerazzurri captain Lautaro Martinez started on the bench in Salzburg before coming on during the second half and scoring the late penalty which secured a 1-0 win.

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