Nazionale A

Darmian: "We're only thinking of beating Croatia"

The Inter wideman two days before the third match in Group B of EURO 2024: we wanted to do better against Spain, but we're a strong group that knows how to react to difficulties"

Saturday, June 22, 2024


For Matteo Darmian, EURO 2024 has lasted only seven minutes plus injury time so far (against Albania in Dortmund). The Inter winger is however the fifth player with the most caps (44, with two goals) among Luciano Spalletti's 26-man squad. His experience for the national team, also for Monday's decisive match in Leipzig against Croatia, which will decide the fate of the Azzurri, will be vital. The team has put the defeat and the performance against Spain behind them: "We are analysing what we did on Thursday to try to not make the same mistakes and prepare for the match against Croatia in the best possible way," Darmian said. "We are well; we will prepare for the game with the right desire and determination to bring home a big result, trying to play our way, putting our quality on show, against a strong and experienced opponent."

Thinking back to the evening in Gelsenkirchen is inevitable: "Disappointment and regret is normal; we wanted to do better, but we came up against a very strong attack. I'm convinced we can only learn from defeats and not repeat the same mistakes, going out to bring home a victory that would take us through." A draw would also be enough: "We are not talking about the fact that not losing might be enough," replied Darmian. "I think it is wrong to think that we have two results out of a possible three; we'll be going all out to win".

Darmian was among those called up for EURO 2016, but from November 2017, it was almost six years before he returned to wear the national team shirt. The Inter player, who has also played for Manchester United in his career, however, refuses any kind of comparison: "It's not the time to go and say what difference there is between one national team and another. We need to focus on ourselves, on what we have to do in two days' time, knowing that it is an important match and that we will try to prepare in the best possible way."

Balance is one of the words that Darmian speaks by most: "After a win, we must not get too excited, just as after a defeat we cannot throw everything away and be too down. We must be more balanced, try to learn from mistakes, continue to improve day after day in training and then transfer the disappointment we had into energy and positive anger. The defeat against Spain was one where we didn't play as we know we can, but we must also be aware of our strengths and show them on the pitch, starting from the game with Croatia. Other national teams may also have greater individual qualities than ours, but from a group point of view, we possess important values ​​and we want to show them".

And who knows, there might be a chance for Darmian: "We have a squad of players with a lot of quality. It's not so much the formation or the way we play with our clubs that counts. What counts is what Spalletti asks of us and what we transfer to the pitch. I am available to the coach and his choices, which are for the good of the team, and I'll try to give my contribution to help the team get through to the next round. We have the capabilities to go through and we want to do so at all costs."


Goalkeepers: Gianluigi Donnarumma (Paris Saint Germain), Alex Meret (Napoli), Guglielmo Vicario (Tottenham);
Defenders: Alessandro Bastoni (Inter), Raoul Bellanova (Torino), Alessandro Buongiorno (Torino), Riccardo Calafiori (Bologna), Andrea Cambiaso (Juventus), Matteo Darmian (Inter), Giovanni Di Lorenzo (Napoli), Federico Dimarco (Inter), Federico Gatti (Juventus), Gianluca Mancini (Roma);
Midfielders: Nicolò Barella (Inter), Bryan Cristante (Roma), Nicolò Fagioli (Juventus), Michael Folorunsho (Hellas Verona), Davide Frattesi (Inter), Jorginho (Arsenal), Lorenzo Pellegrini (Roma);
Forwards: Federico Chiesa (Juventus), Stephan El Shaarawy (Roma), Giacomo Raspadori (Napoli), Mateo Retegui (Genoa), Gianluca Scamacca (Atalanta), Mattia Zaccagni (Lazio).