Barella on Inter ‘family’, superstition and sensing Italy success | OneFootball

Barella on Inter ‘family’, superstition and sensing Italy success | OneFootball

In partnership with

Yahoo sports
Icon: Football Italia

Football Italia

·18 June 2024

Barella on Inter ‘family’, superstition and sensing Italy success

Article image:Barella on Inter ‘family’, superstition and sensing Italy success

Nicolò Barella discusses growing up with his Inter teammates, why he left superstition aside as he got older and when he knew Italy would win the European Championship.

The midfielder scored the winner in Italy’s opening match of EURO 2024, completing the comeback to defeat Albania 2-1.

OneFootball Videos

It capped off a remarkable period for the player, who also won the Scudetto and became a father again in the last few weeks.

“It was wonderful to win the Scudetto and we were confident it was done, but doing it in the derby was a plus for us and our fans,” Barella told Futbol Emotion Italia’s YouTube channel.

“After the final whistle, I celebrated, but then went to shake hands with all the Milan players, because I too experienced losing a Scudetto, a Champions League Final, a Europa League Final. It felt like the right thing to do.”

Italians are notoriously superstitious, so did he do anything in the build-up to this Serie A title?

“I didn’t cut my hair until we were sure, but that was more of a joke with my teammates. Up until 2-3 years ago I would always do the same specific gestures before a match. I did it because I really believed this would help, but now I am much more relaxed and joke around with the other players.”

Barella on growing up at Inter

Barella started out at his hometown club of Cagliari and moved to Inter in the summer of 2019, recently signing a new contract to June 2029.

“I realised my career was taking off when I got a call-up for Italy and was still at Cagliari, so it was only natural I would need to make that separation from my roots. There were many offers before and after that summer, but I immediately married the Inter project. It was a little strange at the start being in a new place, but they made me feel important and welcomed me like family.

“Now the group of lads at the core of Inter are my friends who I basically grew up with. There is the real potential for boredom in this sport at a training camp, you can train in the morning, rest and then have nothing to do, so we end up chatting for hours.”

Italy are the reigning Champions of Europe, so when did Barella know they were going to succeed in the EURO 2020 tournament?

“One of the best memories was our fightback against Austria. We were out of the competition because Marko Arnautovic had scored, but after the game I started telling everyone this was our year.”

View publisher imprint