Walter Mazzarri insists Inter “were not inferior to Roma” tonight despite their 3-0 home defeat.
Francesco Totti bagged a brace and Alessandro Florenzi added a third before half-time, ending the Nerazzurri’s unbeaten record this season.
“As you know, I look at the performance beyond the result,” Mazzarri told Sky Sport Italia.
“Football is based on incidents, which some weeks go against you. Since I arrived, the plan was to improve this side and grow their confidence, which I’d say is succeeding.
“Overall I’d say we were not inferior to Roma in terms of our play. The team played well, but Roma have excellent quality with players like Francesco Totti who can turn a game at any moment.
“Paradoxically, we played better tonight than we did when beating Fiorentina 2-1. We laid siege to Roma in the second half, but it never went in and at that point I realised we were never going to score a goal tonight.”
There was also some controversy over the penalty, as it’s not clear whether the foul on Gervinho was inside or outside the box.
“This is football, Roma hurt us on two or three counter-attacks early on. There was a mistake from the referee too.
“We had more possession, but ultimately that was only worth a statistic, because we lost 3-0. We had more of the ball, more passes and more shots, but no goals. If the players keep on doing this well, the result will go their way more often than not. These incidents can happen.
“Roma deserve a lot of credit, as they defended even when 3-0 up as if the game was still hanging in the balance. They worked so hard and it’s no surprise they have the strongest defensive record in the League.”
Mazzarri threw on Mauro Icardi, Mateo Kovacic and Diego Milito in the second half.
“I saw when 3-0 down the lads looked downhearted and I wanted them to think they could still turn it around, so I made tactical changes and introduced different players. Inter need balance and we did play good football, but Roma set up a human wall and we couldn’t break through.”
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £11,000 to be won monthly!