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D’Ambrosio: Inter eyeing Champions League

Defender says what we all know and want.

FC Internazionale v Hellas Verona FC - Serie A
Danilo D’Ambrosio of Inter competes for the ball with Simone Calvano during the serie A match between FC Internazionale and Hellas Verona FC at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on March 31, 2018 in Milan, Italy.
Photo by Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

In an interview by Sky Italia at the ‘Frames of Passion’ opening party, Inter Milan defender Danilo D’Ambrosio said the team is focused on qualifying for next season’s Champions League.

”The Champions League is the goal, our fans are extraordinary and they’ll certainly help us,” D’Ambrosio said.

The Nerazzurri were given a lift in their chase for the Champions League after beating Udinese last weekend while Atalanta held Lazio to a 1-1 draw.

That put Inter Milan within two points of Lazio for the fourth and final Champions League position for the league.

Now, if Inter wins their last two matches – this weekend’s home stand with Sassuolo and the final game of the season at Lazio – they will earn Champions League qualification. There are other scenarios where the Nerazzurri can make the Champions League, as illustrated here.

Worst case scenario is Inter will play in the Europa League next season which they have already qualified for. It ends a season-long absence from European football.

Udinese Calcio v FC Internazionale - Serie A
FC Internazionale Milano players celebrate a goal scored by Andrea Ranocchia during the Serie A match between Udinese Calcio and FC Internazionale at Stadio Friuli on May 6, 2018 in Udine, Italy.
Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images

Of course, Inter didn’t help their chances after suffering a 3-2 defeat two weeks ago at the hands of Juventus. The Nerazzurri, with just 10 men, held a 2-1 lead over the Old Lady in the second half, only to watch Juventus score two goals in barely 10 minutes to claim the three points and set Inter’s Champions League dreams back a notch.

“We needed to get over our anger, we responded well in Udine,” D’Ambrosio said. “We got through a difficult moment, we rediscovered ourselves and we therefore hope that we can finish the season well.”

He added that one key to the next two matches is not to underestimate their opponent. Despite the fact that Sassuolo are just 12th in Serie A, they have won three of their last four – excluding a 4-1 beating at the hands of Crotone two weeks ago.

“We have players who can make a difference,” D’Ambrosio said. “Even if you need to play a lot on the right, it’s not a problem if you then play on the left and readjust.”

No matter the opponents over the next two weeks, for Inter the mission is clear.

“We’ve not spoken about what happens if we don’t make the Champions League and we don’t even want to think about it,” D’Ambrosio said. “We’ve always believed in ourselves. We’re within two points of Lazio and we need to win six points.”

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