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19.04.2010 18:27

“We’re much better now than in November"

Vanessa Forns

Speaking at the UEFA press conference in Milan on Monday afternoon, Inter manager José Mourinho insisted that his team was “much better” than when they met Barca in the group stage in November.

"Barca were far superior. They won deservedly and we weren’t able to respond to their superiority. It was November. Barca are still as good as they were then. We on the other hand are much better than we were”.

“My team has improved tactically and is more compact. They’ve grown and the mentality in the Champions League is different. Our psychological state is different after the results we have obtained”.

A 50/50 tie

Mourinho admitted that Barca are generally seen as favourites to go through to the final. However, he believes the tie is 50/50.

"It’s not an advanced final"

2009-11-23_ENTRENO_INTER_07.JPGJosé Mourinho doesn’t view the semi-final tie as “an advanced final” although he does feel a tremendous responsibility as the match will be shown around the world. As for playing the second leg in the Camp Nou, he told reporters: ”Playing the second leg in the Camp Nou is more difficult but not decisive”.

However, the Portuguese coach declined to name Guardiola’s line-up in advance, as he has done on many other occasions. He joked: “Guardiola has many alternatives in every position and he hasn’t called me to let me have his line-up in advance”.

No man to man marking for Messi

Mourinho revealed that he has no plans to man to man mark Lionel Messi: “We know that he’s an extremely important player but I’m ruling out individual marking. This isn’t basketball, it’s football and I understand as a game of eleven versus eleven”.

Finally, Mourinho agreed that Barca would still be the best team in the world, “if they’re capable of winning the Champions League again”.
“We’re much better now than in November“
Sneijder: "Our aim is to score"
Inter’s Dutch midfielder, Wesley Sneijder, told reporters. “We have the maximum respect for FC Barcelona and Messi” but insisted that Inter’s main objective is “to score”.

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