- Premier League
Julio Cesar hopes to atone for Inter's 'horrible' season with derby win
After a difficult campaign, in which two coaches have parted company with the club, the Brazil international is desperate to give the supporters something to smile aboutInter goalkeeper Julio Cesar is hoping that victory in Sunday's derby with AC Milan would go some way towards atoning for what he admits has been a "horrible" season for the club.
With just two rounds of the Serie A season remaining, the Nerazzurri sit sixth, three points behind third-placed Napoli and therefore in very real danger of missing out on next season's Champions League.
Consequently, Julio Cesar is driven by the desire to give Inter's long-suffering supporters something to smile about at the end of a trying campaign.
"We feel a sense of responsibility towards our fans," the Brazil international explained, "and that's another reason why we're determined to win: so that even though this season hasn't been fantastic - actually it's been horrible - the fans have something to be happy about.
"And that includes my son, Cauet. He's learnt to cope much better with defeats than he used to, but Inter-Milan is always Inter-Milan; no one wants to lose it and he certainly doesn't. All you want is to win, not even draw."
Most pundits are predicting a victory for the Rossoneri, who, of course, currently sit second in the standings, just a point behind leaders Juventus. But Julio Cesar believes that, as with every encounter with their city rivals, Inter have a 50-50 chance of triumph.
"There are no favourites or underdogs in a derby," he argued. "A derby is a derby, a special game, a championship apart.
"It wouldn't matter if both teams were at the bottom of the table, nobody wants to lose the derby. We sure don't want to lose it, not for us, not for our fans."
The game will also result in Julio Cesar reaching a significant personal milestone, with the 32-year-old poised to make his 300th appearance for Inter.
"Yeah, it's a nice number to reach, though I'm obviously still miles away from [captain Javier] Zanetti," he joked.
"But I'm glad it might come in the derby - a game in itself, a whole 'season' in itself. Three hundred appearances and a special match: all we need now is a win to be able to really celebrate!"
The Derby della Madonnina gets under way at 20.45CET, the same time as Juve's meeting with Cagliari.
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