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Group B rivals to run Inter ragged

Published: Thursday 25 August 2011, 22.05CET
FC Internazionale Milano coach Gian Piero Gasperini knows his side have a tough Group B task ahead, with PFC CSKA Moskva, LOSC Lille Métropole and Trabzonspor AŞ eager to test them.

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Published: Thursday 25 August 2011, 22.05CET

Group B rivals to run Inter ragged

FC Internazionale Milano coach Gian Piero Gasperini knows his side have a tough Group B task ahead, with PFC CSKA Moskva, LOSC Lille Métropole and Trabzonspor AŞ eager to test them.

Their rivals are united in picking FC Internazionale Milano as favourites to top UEFA Champions League Group B but the Nerazzurri's coach, Gian Piero Gasperini, is not getting carried away as he prepares for a tough series of fixtures against PFC CSKA Moskva, LOSC Lille Métropole and Trabzonspor AŞ.

Gian Piero Gasperini, Inter coach
I know CSKA and Lille quite well, but not Trabzonspor; we will have to study the way they play very carefully, because Turkish football usually produces tough opponents and it's improving a lot. Moreover, when you play in Turkey the fans are always very spirited.

At the moment, CSKA are the strongest team in Russia, and they also have the most international experience of our opponents. I faced Lille two years ago in the Europa League, when I coached Genoa. At that time, they were an up-and-coming club, well organised, and that's why they won their league. They have sold some players, but preserved their strong squad.

Alan Dzagoev, CSKA midfielder
I had no preferred opponent. We ended up in a very interesting group. Lille are the French champions and that says it all. We shouldn't get messed up worrying about Inter, who are one of the top clubs in Europe. I know nothing about Trabzonspor, but I think it'll be us, the French and the Italians who will fight for the round of 16 places.

Rudi Garcia, Lille coach
We have every chance. It could have been a more glamorous group, maybe with a bit less travel involved, but no matter: we'll get our teeth into this competition. The favourites? Inter Milan no doubt. Even though they have changed a number of players recently, they still have a lot of talent. We're going to have to get our skates on to learn about how CSKA and Trabzonspor play, but our experience of playing Fenerbahçe in Turkey last year should be useful.

Sadri Şener, Trabzonspor president
It is the best possible draw for us. We are as strong as our opponents in the group and want to represent Turkey in the best way we can in the Champions League.

Last updated: 27/11/12 9.01CET

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