Claudio Ranieri's FC Internazionale Milano received a warm welcome and plenty of gifts after they touched down at the airport ahead of their Group B game against Trabzonspor AŞ, but the Turkish side's coach Şenol Güneş is hoping his side will give nothing away as they fight for UEFA Champions League survival.
Coach Şenol Güneş
They are a team with lots of stars; they have won the Champions League, and even though they started the season badly, they are still a top-class side. Even if they lose against us, they still have a chance to finish top of the group, while it is the exact opposite for us.
We will have to play our game, we have to show them what we can do at home, in front of a sell-out crowd. We have to show good team spirit and fight for each other. The score in the early game in Moscow might have a slight effect on our game, but we don't want to think about it at the moment.
The fact that our fans filled the stadium for our first two home games felt great. I expect the fans to be patient against Inter no matter what the score is. I want them to appreciate what we have achieved for football in Trabzon, and we hope that after the match we will still have a chance of playing European football in the spring. We want three points, not just because it is against Inter, but because we are in front of our superb fans.
I always let the players express themselves on the pitch because they know what they are doing, but this is an important game – a win would be like a gold medal for us, but it is just as vital not to lose, and to do that you have to defend well. Inter played the better football in the first game but we managed to win; there's a lesson in there.
Friday: Mersin İdman Yurdu 1-1 Trabzonspor (Giray Kaçar og 70; Moritz og 81)
Tolga; Čelůstka, Mustafa Yumlu, Giray Kaçar, Čech (Mierzejewski 64); Serkan, Colman (Volkan Şen 80), Zokora, Alanzinho, Halil Altıntop (Paulo Henrique 64); Burak
• Burak Yılmaz failed to score for the first time in his last 12 Super League appearances as Güneş's team extended their unbeaten top-flight run to nine matches.
Burak (hip), Giray Kaçar (groin) and Paulo Henrique (knee) all returned on Friday, while Arkadiusz Głowacki remains doubtful with a minor knock. Róbert Vittek (torn knee ligaments) and Tayfun Cora (hamstring) are both unavailable but Barış Ataş (hamstring) took part in training on Monday and could well feature.
Coach Claudio Ranieri
I was very surprised by the reception we got at the airport; we were given special gifts. I was amazed. I have to pay tribute to the Trabzonspor fans and officials for such a warm welcome.
Trabzonspor still have a chance of qualifying, so they will fight until the last minute, and we are aware of that. We will stick to our game plan. We have trained well and will do everything we can to win. We want to win every game we play; it is crucial for us not to lose, but that doesn't mean we would be happy with a draw.
Things were a bit chaotic when I came to Inter, but this is a strong team and our ambitions are always the highest. With every game we win we are slowly showing how strong Inter really are. We underestimated Trabzonspor's strength in the first game, but we will show what we are capable of this time. A win would leave us stronger and more confident, and then we can concentrate on Serie A until the round of 16.
Saturday: Inter 2-1 Cagliari Calcio (Motta 54, Coutinho 60; Larrivey 88)
Júlio César; Jonathan (Faraoni 87), Ranocchia, Samuel, Zanetti; Stanković, Motta, Cambiasso, Coutinho (Obi 68); Zárate (Álvarez 46), Pazzini
• Coutinho scored his first club goal of the season as Inter recorded only their second home win in Serie A this term. Marco Faraoni came on to make his debut in the Italian top flight.
Coutinho (thigh) is expected to start on the bench again after making a scoring return on Saturday, replacing Wesley Sneijder in the starting XI after the Dutch international picked up a thigh strain in the warm-up which has ruled him out of the trip to Turkey. "Until he is 100% fit, he will not play," said Ranieri. "We don't want his injury to get worse." Júlio César should start in goal, and Yuto Nagatomo (calf) is fit, but Maicon (thigh) will not play.
The clubs crossed paths in the 1983/84 UEFA Cup first round, Trabzonspor winning 1-0 at home thanks to Tuncay Soyak's late strike. Inter went through after a 2-0 home victory through goals from Alessandro Altobelli (48) and Fulvio Collovati (84) after Iskender Gönen's 51st-minute dismissal.
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