Mazzarri pleased with pre-season progress

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BERKELEY – FC Internazionale coach Walter Mazzarri took questions from the media after the Nerazzurri’s opening game in the Guinness International Champions Cup 2014.  

What are Inter aiming for? What do you expect?
“We don’t have a specific target in mind, we have to get Inter back up where it belongs. We’ve made a good start and we showed the right mentality, never easing up – that’s what we did today. We played well.”

There were 42 fouls and four yellow cards. Did you expect it to be such a hard-fought game?
“I explained to the younger players that Real Madrid – who have always been a successful team – show real character even when playing in friendly tournaments. We’re both great teams and great teams always want to try and win.”

It wasn’t the real Real, although Inter’s midfield was lacking a lot of important players too. You found yourselves slightly on the back foot in the first half, but then the team responded with character. Is that what you want to see?
“We struggled to get into gear in the first quarter of an hour and we were playing with a totally new-look midfield. After the goal we started to play better and we finished the game on a high.”

What did you think of M’Vila’s display? And what about Icardi?
“M’Vila played well when he came on. He’s not in top shape yet but he performed well – better than I thought. Now he needs to up his fitness at a higher tempo. Icardi? Besides the penalties he had a good game. He has to improve, like all the others, but he’s on the right path.”

Are you surprised by the sellout crowd? Do you think enthusiasm is higher because of the World Cup?
“I hope so because it’s good for the game. It’s true that there were two big teams playing out there today, but I think the passion in the USA is important for the entire football movement.”