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Spalletti does not fear another mid-season crisis at Inter

2:34 PM EST 12/14/18
luciano spalletti - cropped
After his team exited the Champions League this week and have won one game in seven, the manager remains confident crisis can be averted

Inter boss Luciano Spalletti does not fear their 2018-19 campaign will be derailed by the sort of mid-season crisis they suffered a year ago.

With Tottenham drawing Barcelona, a victory with PSV on Tuesday would have been enough to see the Nerazzurri progress to the Champions League knockout stages.

However, Inter could only manage a 1-1 draw despite playing at San Siro, sending the club to the Europa League while Spurs snatched the second spot behind Barca.

That disappointment has come amid a downturn in form that has seen Inter win just one of their last seven matches in all competitions.

A similar run last season, in which they managed one win in 10 games from December 13 until February 23, saw the Milan giants fall behind in the Serie A title race and exit the Coppa Italia at the hands of their city rivals.

Inter did recover enough to snatch a spot in this year's Champions League on the last day of the season, but speaking ahead of Saturday's game against Udinese at San Siro, Spalletti stressed he does not expect history to repeat itself.

"I think it's different. You just look at the result; I have to look at the incidents which determined the outcome, and to me, it seems very different," he told a news conference.

"After the PSV game, it's crucial the team reacts in the right way. We showed great character after Tuesday's match and, at the same time, great desire to immediately return to the pitch and start again.

"We only dropped out of the Champions League at the end, due to goal difference. Overall, I think the team did very well. We're obviously disappointed but we can't now demolish everything that's been created in a year and a half of work.

"The dressing room is full of 'interismo'. I have no doubt the team will get back on track."

Inter sit third in the table after 15 matches, 14 points behind runaway leaders Juventus. They are three points ahead of local rivals AC Milan in fourth, and four ahead of Lazio in fifth.