Inter oh Inter; you have been missed in the Champions League. Your famous kit and iconic stadium, your heritage and history, has accorded you legendary status.
Europe will now finally have the honour of welcoming you back into club football’s elite competition. In an era where the emergence of noveau riche clubs have consigned you to ancient history, your timely presence in the competition is not just refreshing but nostalgic.
Indeed you are labelled ‘Pazza Inter’ not without reason given your erratic form but it is that craziness which has kept fans tuned in, because they never know what to expect. Then there’s your countless stories of success but none more prominent than in 2010.
You became the first Italian club to capture a treble and seeing legendary figure Javier Zanetti lift the European Cup brought happiness but also a tinge of sadness, being fully aware that an era had come to an end.
Fast forward to today and now you find yourself in a different setting. You are in a phase of rebuilding and the powers you once wielded have shifted towards your opponents, especially those in the Champions League group stage.
Tottenham will invoke the spirit of Gareth Bale to try and defeat you while Barcelona will be baying for blood especially after you knocked them out controversially, in the 2010 edition of the tournament.
Many will question whether you can cope with such illustrious opponents. The writing of your defeat is on the wall but your history proves otherwise, as seen in your trophy room. Conversely the tag of ‘Pazza Inter’ allows fans to have hope that your return will be a glorious one, as they wait anxiously to know which Inter will turn up.
But truth to be told your compatriots will be grateful to see you just being there and competing. Like an old friend returning, you bring with you a huge portion of history that many of the rich new boys on the block can never buy. And to that I say welcome back Inter, Europe has missed you.