Zanetti: I still have a role to play at Inter Milan

The veteran defender is adamant that he can still be useful for the struggling power, even though he is aware of his changing role for the Nerazzurri.
Javier Zanetti realizes that he is nearing the end of his active career, but he believes that he still has a role to play at Inter Milan.

The experienced Argentine was somewhat surprisingly benched for last weekend's Serie A encounter at home against Siena, but the defender feels it's only normal that he's not an undisputed starter at all times.

"I'm feeling physically well, and I still feel useful at Inter. I realize that sooner or later I will have to retire and that moment is not far away. I'm not too worried about it, though," Zanetti stated to reporters. "It was really tough to be benched against Siena, because unfortunately we lost and from the outside you suffer. But it was perfectly normal to be on the subs bench, and I think the coach knows fully well that I'm at his disposal.

"It was bound to happen sooner or later, and there might be many more games I play no part in. I realize this is the birth of a new Inter, and I'm here at the coach's complete service. He knows he can count on me both on and off the pitch. That's the way forward."

The 39-year-old Zanetti has made more than 800 official appearances for the Nerazzurri since joining them from Banfield in 1995.

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