Hakimi played a key role in helping Inter claim their first league title in 11 years last season.
Inter Milan manager Simone Inzaghi has termed the transfer of defender Achraf Hakimi to French giants Paris St Germain as a “real shame”. Inzaghi admitted that he was aware about the player’s transfer, terming him as one of the stars of the club’s Scudetto triumph. The manager expressed his confidence about churning out a great team, terming the inclusion of Hakan Calhanoglu as an “excellent” deal.
“I knew [Achraf] Hakimi would leave. It’s a real shame because after the season he had Europe’s biggest clubs were lining up for him. He was one of the stars of Inter’s Scudetto triumph. It’s difficult for everyone at the moment but I know we’ll have a great team whatever happens. The club have already done one excellent deal by bringing in [Hakan] Calhanoglu. Hakan and Luis (Alberto) are similar players. I’m happy to have Calhanoglu, he’s a player I’ve always liked. He’s skilful, works hard and is very handy from set-pieces. I’m sure he’ll do really well here. With [Ashley] Young leaving too, we obviously need to make a few signings but there’s no rush,” he said as quoted by Inter’s official website.
Inzaghi expressed his excitement over the prospect of working with Romelu Lukaku, having helped Ciro Immobile win the Golden Shoe at Lazio. The Inter Milan manager further stated that he had not interacted with Christian Eriksen recently.
“I’ve spoken to Romelu several times. He’s a sure thing, a fabulous player who works really well with the rest of the team. I spoke to him (Eriksen) before the Euros, then I decided to leave him in peace after what happened to him. He needs time to rest, but obviously we’ll welcome him back with open arms. I’m here to build on the last two years, which culminated in the Scudetto. We must be consistent and credible if we want to achieve the targets we’ve set ourselves. I’m really excited about this new experience and extremely motivated. I know it’s a big task but I see it as a great challenge. I’m here because president [Steven] Zhang, [Giuseppe] Marotta and [Piero] Ausilio showed me how much they wanted me at Inter. My staff and I know this is a great team and a solid club, and the fans have shown me so much support already during the holidays, I know they’re going to be right behind us this season,” he added.
Inzaghi highlighted his expectations going into the season, discussing the reasons behind his move to Inter.
“I want intensity, a team that’s always completely focused. Strong teams react when things don’t go their way. My teams have always played with intensity right down to the last minute, Lazio often used to score goals in added time. It was the right time for a change. The people I spoke to made it clear how much they wanted me at Inter so I accepted this exciting challenge. I know it won’t always be easy and I’m aware that we have a title to defend against lots of very well-equipped teams. But this is Inter. I want to congratulate the club, Antonio Conte and all the players for the Scudetto they won last term,” he concluded.