Mancini: ‘Substitutes decisive’

Roberto Mancini praised his substitutes for “restoring verve” to Inter in the 2-1 victory over Roma.

The Nerazzurri hadn’t won this fixture since 2011, losing the last two by scoring one goal and conceding six, but they emerged 2-1 winners this evening.

“It was a good performance against a great side like Roma. It was not an easy task, aside from the moment Roma are going through, as they remain one of the strongest teams in the League,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

Roberto Mancini praised his substitutes for “restoring verve” to Inter in the 2-1 victory over Roma.

The Nerazzurri hadn’t won this fixture since 2011, losing the last two by scoring one goal and conceding six, but they emerged 2-1 winners this evening.

“It was a good performance against a great side like Roma. It was not an easy task, aside from the moment Roma are going through, as they remain one of the strongest teams in the League,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“Naturally Roma keep the ball well, but in the end we were able to soak up the pressure and win the game.

“Roma were playing to win and adopted a very attacking approach at San Siro. We suffered a little, so did they, I thought it was an entertaining game.

“Against Milan we suffered for the last 15 minutes of the first half, but ultimately they didn’t create many chances against us.

“This was a much more open game, Roma attacked us and that left more spaces for us to play in too.”

Xherdan Shaqiri, Lukas Podolski and Mateo Kovacic proved to be decisive substitutes.

“They came off the bench and put the match on the right track. Those three certainly restored verve to the team, which was flagging at that point.

“Kovacic was extraordinary today, even if he only played for 20 minutes. If he maintains this attitude, then he can play anywhere. The issue of his position won’t matter.”

Mauro Icardi got the late winner, his 17th Serie A goal of the season and remains in the running for the Capocannoniere title.

“He is already a great striker, but can become a champion. He has the opportunities, sometimes he scores and sometimes he doesn’t, but the great quality is that he shakes off a failure and gets right back out there.

“Today he missed a big chance and soon after scored in a similar situation. Not everyone has that mentality.”

Andrea Ranocchia and Nemanja Vidic have been more solid in the four-man defence.

“They have improved a lot at the back, so did Juan Jesus and D’Ambrosio. If they can pass the ball out of defence better, we’ll be all good.

“We have to improve a great deal when passing the ball to feet. There are still a few mistakes, but we’re on the right track.”

Are Inter still in the running for a Europa League spot? They are now four points adrift of sixth place, albeit having played an extra game.

“The four points are the ones we dropped against Parma and Cesena. When you lose points like that, there are going to be regrets. Now there’s an important week ahead of us.”

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