Milan (AFP) – Inter Milan coach Luciano Spalletti believes Harry Kane will be the man to watch but hopes the enthusiasm of returning to “the Disneyland of football” will spur on his Italian side in Tuesday’s Champions League opener against Tottenham.
Against the backdrop of a disastrous start to their domestic campaign, Inter host the English club at a sold-out San Siro in what is their first Champions League match since the 2011-2012 season.
Both teams are coming off weekend league defeats — Inter losing 1-0 to Parma in Milan and Tottenham falling 2-1 at home to Liverpool.
“Harry Kane tired? I don’t agree, we have seen Tottenham matches and we have seen him working in any situation. Tottenham rely a lot on this player,” Spalletti told a pre-match press conference.
The Inter coach believes the game could be a “turning point” for his side, who have just four points from four games in Serie A.
“The Champions League is the amusement park of football, the Disneyland of football. It’s a beautiful and fun world.
“These games are worth so much in terms of enthusiasm and conviction.
“I think that with the period we’re going through this is the game we needed.
“It’s one of those matches and one of those competitions you wouldn’t swap for anything,” added Spalletti, who spent two separate spells at Roma either side of a five-year spell at Zenit Saint Petersburg.
“I’ve been lucky enough to experience them several times, there are incredible emotions and if you’ve been there you can’t do without it.
“The previous times I entered a world that’s particularly beautiful and entertaining, you can hear the music from inside the dressing room.”
Inter Milan snatched Italy’s final Champions League berth at the wire last season by finishing fourth in Serie A.
“The effort we put in last year to play in this competition is a motivation that can overcome any lack of experience or fear,” continued Spalletti.
“We cannot feel any pressure or be intimidated by the English players’ greater experience. Rather, I believe that this match is the chance to kick into gear.”
Slovakian international defender Milan Skriniar added: “I’ve never played in the Champions League and I can’t wait.
“Doing well against Tottenham can put everything right, it can be the turning point.
“The danger man? As a defender I’d say Kane, he’s someone who even if you don’t see him for 20 minutes, he can score with his first chance.
“I played against him in the national team and we lost,” said Skriniar. “We need to be ready for him, but also the other players too.”
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