Sunday February 26 2017
Spalletti: 'Don't disrespect Roma'

Luciano Spalletti was visibly annoyed in his post-match interview, slamming Inter and the media for focusing on penalties. “Roma won deservedly.”

Radja Nainggolan bagged a brace of blockbusters at San Siro in the 3-1 victory before Mauro Icardi pulled one back and a late Diego Perotti spot-kick.

Spalletti arrived in the studio just as Mediaset Premium were analysing potential fouls or refereeing errors.

“I don’t know what people are looking for. Roma won deservedly, people seek all these little incidents and I do not see any foul that Nainggolan made on Gagliardini, as he jumped at the wrong time.

“What interests me is the performance and that shows Roma deserved to win, there is absolutely no doubt about it. All week people have been dragging out pundits and ex-Inter players to talk about penalties. We’re fed up.

“Last year, I had one penalty in 19 games, but I never compared with the records of the other teams. We won anyway. Inter tried to create all this controversy throughout the week and lay the groundwork. Penalties are not automatically points.

“Inter are a great team, you just have to look at their players. They play good football and showed strong mentality today. That’s all fine. They can lose. Roma played well and did not rob anyone of anything.

“So let’s take off the cap, look at what’s inside the brain and rummage around in there. You have incidents both in favour and against.”

Stefano Pioli fielded a new-look system in the absence of suspended Joao Miranda, so was Spalletti shocked?

“I did expect to see an Inter like this, as Pioli is up to date, he likes to take a positive approach, the stadium was full and they play good football. I saw the game against Juventus, Inter caused them real problems.

“Miranda was missing and he’s an important figure for their defence. Ivan Perisic played with Edin Dzeko at Wolfsburg and all week he had told us that he could play all the way down the flank, he assured us that was his role.

“I needed some push and pull, as you push one place and the space opens up for Nainggolan on Jeison Murillo. Juan Jesus was extraordinary in terms of tactical positioning and defensive rigour. He had to block that gap and he did.

“This is the game to me, not fouls or penalties. If you want me to talk about incidents, I can do that – anyone can do that – but I prefer to talk about the game, about tactics and movement.

“All week there was this analysis of why Inter are unhappy with referees and the problems they have with decisions. All that is fine, just don’t get me involved.

“Talking about this is a lack of respect to the Roma players, who fully deserved to win this game.”