Inter Milan coach Walter Mazzarri says talk of a crisis could not be further from the truth.
A 1-0 defeat to Lazio on Monday saw the Nerazzurri drop out of the top five, but the former Napoli boss says people have been too quick to forget where the club was when he took over.
"I wouldn’t like Inter fans to be misled by this information which is not complete," Mazzarri was quoted as saying in La Gazzetta dello Sport. "I read a comparison between Inter and Milan today. Well, if you want to do that then let's not forget about how many points this side picked up during the second half of last season.
"Comparisons need to be made with how this team ended last season while looking at the fact that those players who finished the season last year have started it here with me, and there's no comparison.
"Last year, Milan finished third with the same squad they started this season with, and between us and them, there are now nine points. I just want to point out that today our year is being compared to Milan's and that is not on."
Mazzarri could have the chance for another direct comparison on the field with Milan in the Coppa Italia with victory over Udinese on Thursday night. That would set up the prospect of a quarterfinal meeting with the Rossoneri, who face Spezia in the last 16, although Mazzarri says Serie A is his priority.
"The Coppa Italia must not be seen as a precise objective of ours," he said. "Of course we will do all we can to go through, though. It's good that we get the chance to play again so soon [after Monday's defeat], and it's even better that it's a Coppa Italia game."