Jose Mourinho’s Inter made Italian football history when they won a treble of Serie A, the Coppa Italia and the Champions League in 2009-10, but it appears that extraordinary achievement did not register quite so resoundingly in Turin.
The Nerazzurri defeated Bayern Munich 2-0 in the final of UEFA’s elite club competition at Santiago Bernabeu and remain the last Italian club to lift the European Cup.
Juventus have been unable to add to their two continental crowns, despite having won five successive domestic titles.
And Inter fans are unlikely to be happy with Gianluigi Buffon after the Bianconeri goalkeeper, giving an interview with the Times of India, apparently failed to recall the triumph of Juve’s rivals in Madrid six years ago.
Asked if he is happy with the state of Serie A, the veteran shot-stopper said: “No, not at all. We have lost a place in the Champions League (UCL). Italian clubs are not winning the UCL.
“Last time it came to Italy was in 2007 when [AC] Milan had beaten Liverpool. We could not do so last year,” he added, referring to Juve’s 3-1 loss to Barcelona in the 2014-15 final.
“However, it happens. It’s a cycle and we shall be [on top] again. As a nation we are going through [a] severe financial crisis. That has something to do with it. I am not losing hope, though. Italian clubs will be back at the top of European competitions soon.”
Buffon is preparing for Italy’s opening game of Euro 2016, a clash with Group E opponents Belgium in Lyon on Monday.
The 38-year-old has tasted international success with his country, winning the World Cup in Germany in 2006.
But the experienced custodian does not consider the Azzurri, who lost 4-0 to Spain in the final of Euro 2012, among the leading contenders to triumph in France.
“At the moment, to be honest, we are not favoured to win the tournament,” he said.
“Germany are the world champions. They have almost the same squad that won it in Brazil. Spain will be eager to complete their Euro hat-trick, a rare distinction for any nation.
“Belgium are currently the number one European nation according to [the] FIFA rankings and have a wonderful side. France will be playing at home. We might come after these four. But yes, Italy mean business when such big tournaments arrive in June.
“We always back ourselves.”