Nagatomo: “My game’s come on with Mazzarri”

APPIANO GENTILE – He doesn’t just defend, run and cross, he can put them away at the other end too. And after adding another to his tally against Chievo and becoming Inter’s second highest goalscorer this season, Yuto Nagatomo spoke to Mediaset today.

The first question was precisely about Monday’s match: "It’s a shame we drew because we could have won it, especially as my second goal wasn’t offside, but that happens sometimes unfortunately. Now we have to think positively and concentrate on winning the next one on Sunday."

On the subject of referring decisions going against the Nerazzurri, the Japanese wideman was reminded of what Ricky Alvarez said after Monday’s game. He agreed: "Yes, it is very strange that we haven’t been given a penalty this season but, as I said, we have to be positive."

Nagatomo was naturally asked about the arrival of his fellow countryman Keisuke Honda in Milan and the footballing rivalry with the Rossoneri. "He and I have chatted about lots of things regarding Italian football and Italian customs. He’s a top professional and a very nice guy. As a footballer he’s perfectly capable of playing in Serie A."

So who will win the next derby? "I can’t tell you that. What I can say is that on a personal level I’ve played against AC Milan six times, won five and drawn one. And yes, after the game I’d obviously like to sing ‘Chi non saltare rossoneri è…’"

Is Nagatomo ‘jealous’ in any way that there’s another Japanese in town now? "No, although everyone in Japan will start supporting AC Milan now so I’ll have to score even more goals," he smiled. "He’s a great friend of mine and I’m glad he’s here."

What about the work Nagatomo is doing with Walter Mazzarri? "My game’s come on a lot with Mazzarri, but I must keep improving and to do that I have to keep trying even harder in training."

How can Inter get out of this rut? "We’re playing well compared to the way we were at the end of last season, but unfortunately the results aren’t coming for us. It’s a shame but we have to think positive and always give it everything we’ve got."