Spalletti after Mourinho rant: ‘We behave with referees, while others…’

Luciano Spalletti defends his Napoli substitutions in the 1-1 draw with Roma and hits back at Jose Mourinho’s protests. ‘I regret telling my players to behave themselves with referees.’

After last week’s home defeat to Fiorentina, the Partenopei again wasted a golden opportunity to remain in the title race, as they had the 1-0 lead through Lorenzo Insigne’s penalty until Stephan El Shaarawy scored a late equaliser.

“There is some disappointment, because for long periods we controlled the game well. We were up against a strong side that created problems for us,” Spalletti told DAZN.

“We’re disappointed about the final stages, we introduced fresh midfielders, but were unable to control the ball in the way I had expected and the goal we conceded was definitely avoidable.”

Serie A | Napoli 1-1 Roma: Another blow to Scudetto dreams

The coach has come in for a great deal of criticism due to his substitutions, which were aimed at defending the 1-0 lead and removed all his strikers.

“Even before that, we weren’t very fluid and they were spreading it wide to their wing-backs. In terms of our tactics, we improved, but those who came on could’ve done better. We had four out of five players fresh, yet we tried to put the ball long instead of passing it to feet the way we know how.”

Insigne was distraught after the final whistle, saluting the supporters in tears, aware his last chance of winning silverware with his hometown club had gone.

He will leave at the end of the season to join Toronto FC as a free agent in MLS.

“Naturally, the fact we are getting closer to the moment he will be forced to abandon the team he always played for will provoke certain sensations. He played well and above all when he had to take on the responsibility of the penalty, he did his duty.”

Mourinho ranted about the referee in his post-match comments, claiming the officials had prevented Roma from even attempting to win the game. Spalletti was asked if he wanted to respond.

“No, I won’t respond to Mourinho. From the first moment I came here, I always told my players to behave well, not raise their voices. The result is that when opponents come here, they act like they are the home team, crowding around the referee and doing anything they want.

“If I could go back, I would no longer have asked my players to do that, because some referees are influenced by this attitude. I am not just talking about Roma, either.

“Di Bello was called to check the VAR review because that was a penalty.”

The fact remains, Spalletti has again come close to a Scudetto challenge only to falter. How does he judge the campaign?

“I am judged by what I do. For long periods, we played good football. I think today’s result penalises us in terms of the table, but it gives dignity to the football we played.

“We could’ve doubled our lead in the first half, but towards the end we struggled to keep hold of the ball.”

10 Comments on “Spalletti after Mourinho rant: ‘We behave with referees, while others…’”

  1. If he told his players to behave they should all be getting fined tonight, because they clearly didn’t listen. For the last 15 minutes all they did was foul their opponents then dive whenever a Roma player got within 5 yds of them. A team of cowards in the image of their manager the ultimate “little man”.

  2. Spalletti will never win a scudetto. Remember his is the one who benched Totti. He publicly blames his players instead of owning the blame. Why won’t he bench Insigne. His tears won’t erase the fact that he can’t score unless he takes someones penalty. Another season of wasted talent for Napoli.

  3. @gi-al-lorossi mourinho and his bench are awful and they are instructed to behave in this manner

  4. Insigne certainly tan is his butt off tonight no effort against Macedonia as usual like his fellow napolitano ciro . These guys geeve hard

  5. under mourinho roma staff and players always behave like complete ********. Fonseca was a better manager and a better man, he really deserved another chance. I have simpathy for Roma, but not like this. They deserved the draw but also acted like spoiled little children. As for Napoli, the dressing room is full of serial chokers led by Insigne and Rui, they need fresh faces.

  6. Of course Roma bench act like that, they have been robbed at least 6-7 points this season!
    Napoli fans are upset that Roma outplayed them and now scudetto is just as likely as Zaniolo getting fair treatment from the fenomeni of lega refs and serie a. Disgrace to not even have VAR check. Meanwhile Napoli were happy for the final whistle, should have been 3-1 if Roma attack can learn how to finish.

  7. Maybe half of serie A refs is either hates mourinho or american owner club. Italy refs quality is pretty much what makes italian football less attractive compares to other leagues.

  8. Gordon, I am beginning to think you are right, that some of these refs are out to get Mourinho personally. As Fenomeni commented earlier Roma has been robbed quite a few times this season.

  9. Roma deserved full points. They were more dangerous and had more grade-A scoring opportunities. Regardless of the poor officiating we’ve come to expect in Serie A, Roma is certainly on a mission right now playing as consistently as they have been. Scary team when they are firing on all cylinders.

  10. Silly Roma fans,they were outplayed for most of the game but Napoli couldn’t put the another goal thru and Roma survived thanks to Tommy Abraham a great addition to the club.
    Napoli lacks a killer instinct and plays tight at home in front of their demanding fans, they need an offensive leader who can finish at the net and on headers and provides leadership.
    Spalletti is a clever, respectful coach and man who will win the Scudetto with Napoli, he needs to find that fearless field leader and it will happen

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