Inter boss Walter Mazzarri bitterly complained refereeing decisions are “becoming a joke” after a Coppa Italia exit to Udinese.
Maicosuel’s first half goal proved decisive in the 1-0 result, though Diego Milito had strong penalty appeals for a shirt-tug.
“The second half was an Inter monologue,” the Coach told RAI Sport.
“We are a work in progress and I had to evaluate a few things, so I needed this game to experiment. We were a little shaken up in the first half and suffered Udinese’s pressing. The result is harsh on us, but these things happen in football.”
Milito made his first start since January 2013, but had a strong penalty shout for a Maurizio Domizzi shirt-tug.
“It’s becoming a joke now. You too saw the incidents today, so nobody can say ‘Mazzarri complains about referees.’ I don’t want to talk about it anymore for the rest of the season.
“Milito’s comeback is important, as he hadn’t played 90 minutes in a year. Now we must concentrate on Serie A with a player like Milito back in our ranks.”
It is a bitter blow for the Nerazzurri, who also lost in Serie A to Lazio on Monday night and saw the Coppa Italia as their only shot at silverware this season.
They had not gone out of the tournament in the Round of 16 since a defeat to Bari in 2002.
“This summer we set certain parameters and we’re on track with those. We’re missing a few points in the League, but I think we are doing very well. I don’t have to convince anyone, as last season Inter failed to qualify for Europe for the first time in 14 years and it’s a sign this club is going through a difficult time.
“People must accept we are a work in progress. We’ve only lost three games and had a few too many draws, but this squad has a soul and cannot do everything in one year.”
Mazzarri opened the door to a potential January sale for Fredy Guarin, who is a prime transfer target for Chelsea.
“Clearly I’d like for him to stay, but if his sale is being considered then that too explains the club’s situation. This year there are eight players going to the end of their contracts.
“I can’t give guarantees to the fans. I arrived in June when Erick Thohir wasn’t the owner yet and I was told to get the best out of this squad. I achieved something at Napoli, which is why this team was handed to me.
“We are continuing a project, even if inevitably we’d have been happier at qualifying for the Coppa Italia Quarter-Finals.”