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Thohir targets Champions League glory

SoccerNews in Serie A 19 Nov 2013

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New Inter owner and president Erick Thohir has targeted the 2016 UEFA Champions League as he aims to return the club to its former glory.

The Indonesian businessman finalised his takeover of the Serie A club in mid-October, ending months of negotiations with Massimo Moratti, the man he has succeeded.

Thohir has vowed to strengthen the squad in January and set his sights on becoming European champions in two seasons’ time, with Inter having last lifted the trophy in 2010.

“Of course I would like (Lionel) Messi to join Inter, just like all the fans,” he optimistically told the club’s official website. “We’re looking to do something in the January transfer window but we’re not after a quick fix.

“We’re creating a system where the ownership, the management and the coach have to sit down and draw up a plan, not only for this year but for the next two or three years.

“The Champions League final will be held in Milan in 2016 (a claim unconfirmed by UEFA) and it would be great to win it again.

“It takes time to build a team but I really believe we have the fundamentals in place and we can slowly move forward and make it happen.”

After meeting with the owners of other clubs in the Italian top flight, Thohir has also prioritised making Serie A the best league in the world.

“For me the most important thing is making Serie A big again like it used to be in Asia, where there’s a huge market,” he said.

“As I said at the meeting with other club owners, we must work together to make Serie A the best league in the world again.”

The 43-year-old admitted he would have to convince his own son to switch his allegiance from one of Inter’s Serie A rivals.

He added: “Is it true I have a son who is a Juventus fan? Yes, one of them is a Juventus supporter but I’ll make sure that in a few months’ time he will become an Inter fan.”

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