Hernanes: “Character, heart, determination – what we need to win the derby”

APPIANO GENTILE – Hernanes spoke to BeIn Sport Doha
about his feelings two days before his first ever Milan derby.

He said: "I can’t
wait until Sunday even if we know that we have to take every day as it comes. As
this is one of the most watched derbies in the world, playing in it for the
first time is very important to me. I want to prepare for it properly,
with enthusiasm, so that the days until Sunday pass quickly and so that I reach
the game in good shape.

"As I said before the Napoli match, we need to pull out
all our strength of character. Heart and desire to win make the difference. I really
like the saying that states your desire to prepare properly for a game has to
be even greater than your desire to win it. First and foremost we have to win
because it’s a derby, a very special game. We have more than one reason to want
to win it. How do you prepare for such a game? On the training ground, as we’ve
always done. The boss has always told us to prepare for every game as much as
possible and we’ll do the same again this time, preparing everything down to
the finest detail and with the belief that we’re doing the right thing."

What’s needed in a game against AC Milan? "You have to manage your
energy well, as that’s what a derby is all about. Perhaps even push as much as
possible at the start. But everything has to be a mix of desire, heart and
being able to manage the game. Our organisation between defence and attack is

"What’s my opinion on AC Milan? They’re a strong side. They didn’t start
the season well, but recently they’ve been better, winning five in a row. They
have tremendous players. Strong players. It’ll be a good battle."

Hernanes also spoke about the differences between this derby and the Rome
derby: "The rivalry is felt even more in the capital. When I signed for Lazio
there were still three or four months to go before the derby, and already everyone was
asking me to score a goal against Roma. They would constantly implore me to."

Finally, a word on the World Cup: "Right now I’m in good form. That’s
to say I’m training every day, I’m playing regularly and I feel I’m ready to
earn a call-up. I hope it comes. It’s fantastic that the tournament is being
played in Brazil. It’s an honour to be able to be part of the Brazilian
national side, and having the chance to represent Brazil would be incredible. There
will be an amazing atmosphere there."