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Inter and Real Madrid are on different levels, Conte admits following Champions League defeat

The Italian coach wasn’t too concerned about his side’s loss and urged them to continue making progress

Inter manager Antonio Conte conceded Real Madrid are on a “different level” to his side after they claimed a 2-0 win in the Champions League on Wednesday. 

Eden Hazard converted a first-half penalty for Zinedine Zidane’s side before Rodrygo’s volley in the 59th minute wrapped up the result. 

Inter, who have now won just one of their last six games in all competitions, are currently bottom of their Champions League group after picking up two points from four games. 

Having seen Arturo Vidal sent off in the 33rd minute, Conte seemed content with his side’s overall performance and stressed Zidane’s side were always going to be a challenge to contain. 

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“It was always going to be difficult playing against big clubs like Real Madrid, so when going a goal down and a man down, it becomes an impossible mountain to climb,” Conte told Sky Sport Italia.

“I think we saw the difference between them and us. It shouldn’t knock us down. It should show us there’s a path we must take and we need to be hungry, hard-working and humble, to realise where we are and not let ourselves get swayed by voices from the outside.

“The only path forward is to work hard and grow in every possible way.

“I don’t think we’re weak up front, as we score plenty of goals. We are perhaps conceding a few too many at the moment. As I said, the game was immediately an uphill struggle and it became difficult to get back into it due to a red card that was caused by an excessive protest.

“This is the situation, we accept it. We had done much better and were more aggressive in Madrid, but it was tough here to be almost immediately 1-0 down and then see a player sent off. That knocked the wind out of us.

“Nonetheless, I think the team worked very hard today and put the effort in. Don’t forget, we were against Real Madrid and not the bottom-of-the-table club.”

Speaking to Inter TV, Conte added: “We are talking about two teams on different levels. Real Madrid dominated this competition in recent years and are always protagonists. We are just glancing in.

“The attitude was certainly the right one and I thanked the lads. We can win or lose, the important thing is to do it as men. The lads gave their all.”


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