Inter's Japanese defender Yuto Nagatomo pleased with clean sheet in 5-0 win over Parma

The Nerazzurri claimed their fifth consecutive win on Saturday and the Samurai Blue defender said it was the perfect start to 2012
Inter full-back Yuto Nagatomo says he's most pleased by the fact his side's defence kept a clean sheet in Saturday's 5-0 Serie A win over Parma.

Nagatomo, who has been criticised for neglecting the defensive side of his game at times, played the full 90 minutes at left back in the victory which continues Inter's improvement in form.

"It was important to get through the game without conceding. If you don't concede then obviously you can't lose and it's easier for everyone, including our team-mates in attack," Nagatomo told the club's website.

"We didn't let the opposition have many chances, we kept our balance, and I'm sure that the team will keep on improving."

The Japanese added it was a good start to the new year for the Italian giants who started the 2011-12 Serie A season slowly.

"I'm happy that 2012 has begun with an important win for me and for the team," he said.

Inter's next month is against city rivals Milan and Nagatomo was excited by the prospect.

"If I were to play, I would be the first Japanese player to feature in the Milan derby," he said.