Roberto Mancini Says Inter Has No Shame In Losing To Napoli
Inter coach Roberto Mancini claimed the title hopeful was unfortunate to lose against the “best team in the league” following Yuto Nagatomo’s red card.
Gonzalo Higuain scored a brace as Napoli replaced Inter atop the Serie A table courtesy of 2-1 win on Monday.
Inter was forced to play the entire second half with 10 men after Nagatomo was shown a second yellow card for a mistimed challenge on the stroke of halftime in Naples, but the visitors almost salvaged a draw as substitute Stevan Jovetic and Miranda hit the post inside the final 40 seconds.
Speaking to reporters after the match, Mancini said: “Personally I’m happy because we were always in it, even in the first half.
“Yuto was sent off for a little foul. We would never have lost 11 v 11 and we might even have won it because we played brilliantly. Sadly that’s football for you. [Jose] Callejon clearly dived for Nagatomo’s first booking, whereas for the second Yuto could have been a bit more careful.
“It was a very open game that was ruined by an unfair sending off, so it’s hard to assess. [Pepe] Reina and Higuain were exceptional. As I said, that’s football but there’s no shame in losing if you’ve played well against the best team in the league and two of their players have had a night like that. On this occasion they got lucky and we didn’t.”
Inter trailed 2-0 just past the hour-mark after Higuain added to his second-minute opener at Stadio San Paolo.
Adam Ljajic, however, pulled a goal back in the 67th minute.
And despite Inter’s numerical disadvantage, it nearly escaped with a share of the spoils in the dying stages as Jovetic hit the crossbar and Miranda’s header was tipped onto the woodwork by Napoli goalkeeper Pepe Reina.
“There was a ball we didn’t deal with properly at the start and Higuain did superbly to score an amazing goal,” Mancini added. “We deserved more come the end of the match. I thought both Miranda’s and Jovetic’s headers were going in.”