Luciano Spalletti: Inter Milan aiming to reach the level of current Barcelona side

Inter Milan manager Luciano Spalletti has said that his team are looking to reach the standards set by the current Barcelona squad in the future. The Nerazzurri come into the Champions League encounter after bagging seven straight league wins but they were outclassed during the reverse fixture of the European competition.

Speaking to reporters, Spalletti was full of praise for the current Blaugrana side and believes the Nerazzurri can consider their opponents as the benchmark to make progress towards the right direction, he said: “We’ve always said that we can play against any opponent… this is the chance to see if we really can compete against any side.

“Barcelona represents the highest level of difficulty that there is. They are already at the level that we are looking to reach. Barcelona have been a point of reference for all coaches, and not just in football. Inter are in a phase of continual growth, I think we’re doing better than last season even though we have four points less.”

Inter started the season in a rather slow manner after suffering two defeats from their opening four league matches but they have since picked up pace with seven straight wins which sees them right behind table-toppers Juventus. Meanwhile, they have also impressed on their return to the Champions League with six points from the opening three group-stage matches and they are currently positioned second behind Barcelona.

Elsewhere, Ernesto Valverde’s side also experienced a mixed bag during the early phase of the campaign, but they have picked up pace since the last international break. The Catalan giants have not dropped a single point following the last set of internationals and this has helped them bridge a four-point lead at the top of the La Liga standings. Barca are likewise leading their Champions League group and a victory would seal their position in the knockouts with the top spot.