Consider this a pre-emptive apology. Yes, we are referring to Manchester City’s opponent in the Champions League final, Inter Milan. Yeah, we know that’s not what the team is calling for.
Inter’s roster has always been complicated. The club’s full title, FC Internazionale Milano, tells the story of its formation: In the early days of Italian football, before the First World War, the city’s first team – AC Milan – had a policy of training only native players. Many of its members protested; When the matter could not be resolved, they separated and started their own international outfit.
With one exception — UEFA, European soccer’s governing body, always uses the club’s actual name, in all its polysyllabic glory — no one, anywhere, uses that title. In Italy, the club is on regular occasions Internazionale and Inter in discussion. The team’s social media accounts follow that trend: On. TwitterInstagram and TikTok, run by the @inter handle.
That, surely, is the way he thinks of himself: In 2014, the club filed a US trademark application for the word “Inter”, a file that would later lead to a legal dispute with the fledgling major for several years. League soccer team, Inter Miami, among other teams.
The problem is that outside of Italy, “Inter” doesn’t seem to cut it. In the English-speaking world, the most common usage is for the club to be called Inter Milan. Why this conference was held is anyone’s guess. Perhaps it was a determined attempt to transliterate the club’s full name. Maybe to distinguish it from Internacional, the Brazilian team.
Or maybe, as the two teams will face the same fate – Sporting Clube de Portugal, mistakenly Sporting Lisbon, and Athletic Club, forced to go by Athletic Bilbao – English speakers will feel more comfortable knowing. Exactly, where something is. (The reason, anyway, is that Fussball Club Bayern Munchen is only half-translated. It’s enough to put it in Munich, and no one should know it’s in Bavaria.)
As with sports and athletics, Inter has at least a little qualms about naming, although in recent years it seems to have accepted the inevitable.
In 2021, when the office of the German design house ordered Porsche to change its badge – a process that, for some reason, created a new “visual identity” – it removed the letters “F” and “C” from the beginning. Logo, leaving only two “I” and “M”. Of course they stood for Internazionale Milano. Or Inter Milan in English.