MILAN – Smiles, memories, anecdotes… all leading back to that night in Vienna. And a line-up that remains etched in the minds of all fans. That was the start of the Grande Inter, who were celebrated today on the 50th anniversary of the Nerazzurri’s first European Cup.
A ceremony was held at the headquarters of the Lombardy regional government to commemorate that victory in 1964 and pay homage to that side. A true celebration, with many of the stars of that day era taking part.
The Grande Inter players gathered in the spectacular setting of the Sala Belvedere on the 39th floor, along with Massimo Moratti and his family, Erick Thohir, Handy Soetedjo, Javier Zanetti, Mrs Gandolfi Herrera, Mrs Francesca Picchi, Gianfelice Facchetti and Luigi Prisco.
They were welcomed by the president of the Lombardy Region, Roberto Maroni: “It is an honour and a pleasure for me to welcome here the players who were a part of a legendary team – THE team whose line-up everyone knows.”
Before the awards were handed out, a number of players came up on stage to share their memories of that triumph, Sandro Mazzola recalling how Alfredo Di Stefano looked like a giant, on the night Helenio Herrera became “Il Mago” [the Wizard] and Inter became “Grande”.
Massimo Moratti said: “This was something that needed to be done, to remember my father and my family, and that legendary Inter side which become known as La Grande Inter from that day on. There are people present today who gave us immense joy and thrills, who made us proud of being Interisti. We became proud thanks to the exceptional achievements of these exceptional people. Just like Zanetti, also here today, is an exceptional person. I’d like to thank president Thohir, representing Inter officially tonight. I’ve had the pleasure of talking to him about this game. He already knew the story, but I explained to him the sort of joy I felt. I’m sure he will be able to bring this club similar success.”