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Coco: "We have chances to reach important objectives."

07/08/2002 Taken from Inter.comBARI - From the touchline at Bari's San Nicola stadium, Nerazzurro Francesco Coco summed up Inter's pre-season so far.
"I'm convinced of my possibilities and of those of the team," said Coco . "We really do have the chance to reach important objectives in this season that is about to begin."
Coco added, "The coach asked us to find immediately a good psychological approach to the match on the fourteenth of August against Sporting Lisbon. I believe that besides the right attitude we are also playing excellently."

Coco on his debut: "I didn't feel any kind of pain and this is the most important thing."

08/04/2002 taken from
GENOA - Neo-Nerazzurro Francesco Coco is satisfied with his debut for Inter during last night's three-team tournament in Genoa.
"I didn't have the same pace as my team-mates, that's normal," said the 25-year-old Sicilian. "I've trained just four times with the squad, I couldn't have asked for much more. I didn't feel any kind of pain and this is the most important thing."
Coco moved well during last night's debut, showing excellent coordination with his team-mates in defense.
"I knew a lot of them already," continued Coco . "We understood one another easily, both in applying the offside and in moving out of defense."
Coco also commented on his penalty miss against Hertha Berlin, saying: "It's better if I don't take shots from eleven meters [penalty spot]. I'll take them during the summer tournaments only."

Coco: "Inter have given me total confidence and I have to show I deserve this shirt."

08/03/2002 taken from
GENOA - Ahead of his debut in an Inter shirt, Sicilian wing-back Francesco Coco is watching the clash between Hertha Berlin and Sampdoria from the touchline. New signing Coco can't wait to get onto the pitch.
"I'm well, I've recovered," said Coco . "It's my first match with Inter and it's a fantastic feeling. I'm happy and I want to do well."
Speaking to Telelombardia, Coco confirmed his happiness at being a Nerazzurro player. "Inter have given me total confidence and I have to repay them. To do that I have to show I deserve this shirt."


08/02/2002 Taken from
APPIANO GENTILE - At today's press conference, new signing Francesco Coco commented on his call-up to Cuper's squad for tomorrow night's Grafoplast Trophy in Genoa.

Does this call-up mean you are sure to be used?
I will certainly play a part of a match. I should be able to play at least forty-five minutes. It's been a few days now that I've begun to work well and today I trained fully with the squad. I believe I will be ready to play at least for a little bit.

Has your World Cup experience affected you positively?
However it went, I played in a World Cup and so it's an important experience. It can't be 100% positive because we had other ambitions. But if you've given everything then you have brought home something positive. On a personal level I've brought home a lot of positive memories.

At a press conference, Trapattoni publicly stated that he should have changed you and Panucci on the flanks in the last match.
I didn't read about it. I was certainly fresher, it was my second game. I may even have been physically stronger. I think that a lot of mistakes were made at the World Cup - by the Italian training staff, the referees and by other people. But a lot of the blame falls on us - we should have won and we were knocked out in the round of sixteen. It went like that, so let's look to get something positive out of what happened.

In Trieste, Di Biagio and Materazzi seemed to be behind in terms of physical fitness. Does the same go for you?
I expect to be ready to play a match and not to have any problems after. It's my first match. I haven't trained with the squad for five days due to a slight problem. So I could be behind. I want to be in good condition the day after the match. Fitness comes day by day.

There are twelve days until the Champions League preliminary first leg. Is that enough time for you?
Yes. I started on the fifteenth [July], together with the other national team players. I did the first four days, the most important, during which you work a lot. Then I stopped for five days, but in reality I've never stopped because I was following a different kind of programme. Now I've been training to a high level for three days. Of course, I'm not in top form, that's unthinkable. But I think I will be in acceptable form for the fourteenth [August].

What do you think of Inter's performance in Trieste?
Inter did very well against Juventus and looked to be a sure side, played good football and showed good passing. We had two important opportunities. Then against AC Milan… The second forty-five minutes are also the most difficult in the championship. I think the test against Juventus was more important. I believe that Inter was the most convincing of the three sides.
Italy's next international is scheduled for 21 September against Slovenia. Will Francesco Coco play?
Everyone hopes so and I hope so, too. I have a very good relationship with Trapattoni. He allowed me to make my debut for the national team - he believes in me and it's important for him. I will always be ready to find myself in the right place, just as I have always done.

You were one of the few to be called-up, despite the fact that you were playing abroad prior to the World Cup.
I've always felt the coach's confidence in me. He has confirmed his confidence in me by always calling me up, even when I played with Barcelona. I was sure because I knew the coach could count on me.

Do you agree that from a psychological point of view it's better to play against Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League preliminary rather other, weaker teams?
I think that for the mind it's always better to play against stronger opponents. Even if you don't want to, you always give something extra. The problem with the smaller sides can be just that - the snare of superficiality. It will be an important clash - Sporting Lisbon are Portuguese champions. Like us they are already ahead with their preparations. It's up to us to go to Lisbon and show we are stronger.
How much is this Inter missing Ronaldo ?
He's missed a lot because he's a great player. I'm very curious to train with him. All the teams need great players.

How did you see him at the World Cup?
I thought he did very well, but I saw a lot of other players that did well. After his misfortunes, I'm very happy that Ronaldo is back in great form.

AC Milan vs. Inter risks becoming Rivaldo vs. Ronaldo. Isn't that a minimization of the Milan derby?
Yes, a minimizes it a bit. Both teams have other important players. Ronaldo and Rivaldo are two absolutely world class players, but alone they're not enough to win the championship. They can make the difference if behind there is a solid base, that is, other players that make their contribution.

Coco: "The environment here at Inter is very familiar"

07/30/2002 taken from
MILAN - Here is an extract from Coco 's interview to "Corriere dello Sport":

After two weeks' at Inter, what would you like to say?
"I finally found confidence in myself here at Inter."

What does Inter mean to you?
"It is already an important team for me, both under the technical and human aspect."

Two weeks' life at Inter - what are your sensations, feelings and thoughts?
"One above all. Since the first days at Pinetina I had the feeling that the environment was already familiar to me. Not only for the coaches and my team-mates. Everything and everyone looked familiar to me, as if I had already seen and met them, as if they were friends."

Coco: "With or without Nesta we can win the scudetto"

07/30/2002 taken from
MILAN - Here's another extract of new signing Francesco Coco 's interview with "Corriere dello Sport":

What are your impressions of Cuper and his work?
"In my career I've met a lot of coaches. The ones which have left their mark up to now are two - Fabio Capello and Alberto Zaccheroni. Capello has had the merit of moulding my character, Zaccheroni taught me many things from the tactical point of view, he made me mature as a player. Cuper has the determination of Capello, the insight and precision of Zaccheroni."

Have you met and spoken to Moratti?
"I've met the president just once, in his office, during my official presentation. I was rather nervous and excited. Moratti impressed me for his simplicity. Kind, friendly, outgoing, he treated me like an old friend. It was incredible, I couldn't believe it!"

Nesta or not? What do you think about the negotiation?
"Who wouldn't like a player like Nesta? He is the best in the world in his position. But I would like to add that even without Nesta this team can win the scudetto."