Inzaghi targets 10 points for Champions League progression as Inter goalkeeper decision looms

By Sports Desk September 12, 2022

Simone Inzaghi is aware of the importance of Inter's upcoming trip to Viktoria Plzen as he targets 10 points to stand a chance of progressing from a difficult Champions League group.  

Having been drawn alongside two European heavyweights in Barcelona and Bayern Munich, Inter know taking maximum points against the Czech champions will be key to their hopes.

Inter suffered a chastening 2-0 defeat to Bayern on matchday one, but they have only lost their opening two games in one previous Champions League campaign, doing so in 2006-07 under Roberto Mancini. 

Inzaghi emphasised the significance of bouncing back from that disappointment on Tuesday as he labelled Group C the toughest in the competition.

"Undoubtedly, it is an important match; we know we have ended up in the most difficult group of the whole Champions League, but we want to play it," Inzaghi told reporters on Monday.

"The first game was not the best; we tried, but Bayern were better than us. Now we know that this game could put us in danger, but we want to face it in the best way."

Asked whether Tuesday's match would be decisive, Inzaghi added: "Since there are still four [games] missing, probably not.

"But we know the importance it has, and we know that nine times out of 10, you have to score 10 points to pass a group. 

"Last year, we were good at getting them. This year, we know that the group is more competitive, but tomorrow we want to score the first points because we want to change the standings."

Inter's only previous Champions League meetings with Czech opponents came in 2019-20, when they took four points from two games against Slavia Prague but failed to advance from their group.

Meanwhile, Inzaghi has a decision to make between the posts after starting Andre Onana against Bayern before Samir Handanovic was recalled for Saturday's 1-0 win over Torino.

Onana's 10 saves against the Bundesliga giants made up the highest tally on record by an Inter goalkeeper in the Champions League (since 2003-04), but Inzaghi would not confirm his involvement.

"As for the goalkeeper, I have decided, but at this moment I don't want to say it," he said.

"The players don't know it yet because we only had one training session. This morning we were able to work on the video, a little on the pitch. It's right that they know [first]."

Whoever starts in goal will hope to be protected by superstar centre-back Milan Skriniar, who remained at Inter despite rumoured interest from Paris Saint-Germain in the transfer window.

Inter chief executive Giuseppe Marotta declared his intention to tie Skriniar to fresh terms last month, but the 27-year-old, appearing alongside Inzaghi on Monday, refused to touch on his future.

"I've never talked [about it], and I prefer to stay like this," he said. "We came here to play this game, and I don't want to talk about my future and my contract; I don't think it's the right time and place. 

"When there will be news, you will know from me and from no one else, I have never spoken, and I prefer it to remain so."

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