Inter Milan captain Mauro Icardi refused to offer any excuses after his team were knocked out of the Europa League last night, 90min reports.
They surrendered a two goal lead to Israeli side Hapoel Beer-Sheva, which confirms a bottom-placed finish for the Italians. Icardi opened the scoring, with Marcelo Brozovic appearing to put the 2010 Champions League winners in a commanding position. Icardi nevertheless refused to blame his teammates for the dramatic turnaround.
Speaking to Inter Channel, the Nerazzurri striker conceded:
“What we saw often happens. As soon as we sit deep behind the ball, mentally we create problems for ourselves and we concede goals. We have to start again with a good team spirit and hard work at the training ground.
“We cannot look for excuses, like it’s nearly the winter break or that results haven’t been on our side of late.”
New coach Stefano Pioli was angered by his side’s performance and pinpointed a faulty mentality that led to the squandering of their two goal lead.
“It’s first and foremost a mental problem. We didn’t play like Inter in the second half. Games last 95 minutes and we came apart and ended up letting the opposition in at the back in ways we cannot and must not let happen again.”
Two tough fixtures await Inter before the winter break against top three rivals Fiorentina and Napoli. With Inter already eight points off a lucrative top three place, Pioli admits he has his work cut-out.
“We’re going to have to work very hard,” he said.
“We can’t use (fitness levels) as an excuse because despite being a man down we still managed to fashion two decent chances to win the match late on.”
Pioli will be hoping Inter can get back to winning ways soon after a turbulent start to the season and a fall from grace for Inter captain Icardi. The Argentine striker again proved his ability to score goals last night which will help to rebuild bridges with the club’s ultras.