Straight from the dark heart of Italy
A Saturday night hasn’t had this much fever since John Travolta donned a white suit and swaggered into the mindset of a generation.
In footballing terms, Diego Milito is the latter day Tony Manero for the manner in which the Argentine strutted through the Bayern Munich defence on an unforgettable and highly-charged evening in Madrid.
Jose Mourinho can turn on the water-works as neatly as Milito turned Daniel Van Buyten and his two left feet in the area, and there he was again for the second time in less than a week snivelling into the sleeve of his expensive suit.
And of course alongside the Blubbering One was a manically-beaming Massimo Moratti, who must be the worst investor in the world, having had to wait fifteen years for a return on the near one billion Euros thrown into his all-consuming goal of winning the big one his father Angelo landed in successive years back in the 1960s.
In fact, he cut short the Sky Sports Italia presenter who decided that, in the moment of the purring president’s greatest achievement, he should bring up the matter of all those failed signings - and terminated the post-game interview with a curt good-night before turning on his heels and disappearing into the night.
Back in Milan they have been gathering in their thousands all day and anyone who has ever staggered across Piazza Duomo laden down with designer purchases or trailing in the wake of a significant-other in a shopping daze will know how grand that open space from one side to the other is.
"Hang on - if I'm here and you're there, who's driving...?"
Well, it was not just packed on Saturday evening, it was heaving, over-flowing, bursting to the seams to do any Italian game-show dancer proud – estimates put the crowd at 100,000.
The Nerazzurri faithful had come from near and far to be in the very cradle of the club’s existence – as it was in a restaurant just around the corner from the city’s main square that Internazionale was formed by a group of disgruntled AC Milan types who were fed up with too many Italians in the team.
The founding fathers would have been settling contended in their graves when the teams walked out without one Italian in the starting line-up – and the roar that greeted the final whistle was enough to awaken the dead as a life-time of frustration and exasperation came pouring out.
Forty-five years is a long time for anyone walk to around with a sense of “what it’s all about” but for Inter fans of a certain age - Moratti would count himself amongst them – they at last got it.
NEWS: Inter crowned kings of Europe
So this is why we exist: this truly is the meaning of life and the universe wrought whole into this rather cramped space they may or may not have mused.
Even if the celebrating and absolutely delirious Inter followers could only express themselves in a succession of grunts, screams and the odd yelp it was a sight to behold.
Needless to say the party went on all night as fans raced through the city on mopeds waving huge flags and motorists honked their horns in scenes more akin to week-day rush-hour traffic in say Naples or Rome rather than staid-old Milan.
Around 50,000 fans even found the energy to tramp out to the San Siro to welcome the team back at 6am with a dawn chorus.
"Please don't make me stay Mummy - the other boys are horrible to me!"
The flight that touched down at Malpensa airport an hour earlier was shorn of many of the main protagonists including Mourinho who had remained in Madrid with Moratti for no doubt one last, lingering good-bye.
Now, there is a question that has to be raised.
We all know that Jose is sick and tired of certain elements of the Italian game, with the media topping his list of hates but fellow coaches, rival presidents, Mario Balotelli and all other clubs are not far behind.
He has been plotting his exit strategy for some time and now that he feels his work is done he can say whatever he wants - but the fact that he told RAI Sports that he was looking for a “new challenge” had something of a hollow ring to it.
What can be more demanding than attempting to repeat the achievements of this year with Inter? No club has defended the Champions League crown in its current form or repeated a treble for that matter – and what kudos in the game would accompany such a feat?
Seeing as he is only about one signing away from hitting the billion-euro mark on transfers anyway, surely Moratti could have provided his dream maker with all the riches he required for what would have been the real challenge?
NEWS: Zanetti desperate for Mourinho to stay
More from Serie Aaaaargh!
I thought exactly the same : Why not stay another year and try to win it again? Now that is a real challenge. Maybe even add a few to the squad. Kolarov, Vucinic, perhaps?
Still, he will join the circus soon at Madrid and I suppose that is another grand challenge in the waiting. I wonder how he will fair trying to get a grip on the worlds worst run club.
Hopefull Inter get a good replacemant. I hope it's not Mihajlovic or that clown Benitez(I'm sure he could go through a billion of Moratti's money in a fortnight), or even Capello(remember his dreadful Juve side's a few years ago, hoofing the ball to no one all night). I'm hoping it will be Spalletti. He did well at Roma and might do even better with some money behind him. Speaking of which, some of these ageing Inter players are talking of following Jose out. Madrid are stupid and will pay whatever price Inter ask. I say take it and buy the two I mentioned earlier, along with a few others.
It was a great sight to see so many different nationalities represented in that internazionale side who lifted the champions league trophy.
But I'm still bemused by how Thiago Notta, who was rejected by FCB and Atletico...and Milito who was about to be playing in la Segunda with Zaragoza...both became part of a team which are now champions of europe.
Not that I am criticising Motta or Milito.
I suppose it shows just how clever a coach Mourinho is to get the best out of these players.
Well done to Internazionale, we'll see if they can make history.
Looking for a new challenge isn't always the same as looking for a bigger challenge. Mourinho probably feels this is the perfect time to go; Madrid want him now and have a great squad that hasn't quite fulfilled its potential. At the same time he has achieved what he came to do at Inter: Scudetto + Champions league crowns. It really is pretty impressive considering how far behind Inter seemed against Barca in the group stages just seven months ago.
Milito played like this and scored loads everywhere he went. He was just unlucky that no big team offered him a chance before he turned 30.
Motta was rediscovered and rejuvenated by Genoa, for whom he played awesomely last year, much better than this year for us, to tell you the truth.
Both were Inter director Branca's choices, by the way, not Mourinho's.
Huge kudos to Jose for being an exceptional motivator, which is what counts more in football, and also for make things work this year with 6 new faces in the first 11.
But Milito and Motta can't be ascribed to his genius
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