Sunday, 9 August 2009

Mourinho upbeat after Supercoppa loss

Inter coach Jose Mourinho insists the better team lost after seeing his side fall 2-1 in a shock Supercoppa Italiana defeat to Lazio in Beijing.

Lazio celebrate in BeijingGoals from Matuzalem and Tommaso Rocchi shortly after the hour mark gave Lazio a 2-1 win in Inter's first game without Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

The Nerazzurri dominated the game at the Bird's Nest stadium, but were unable to convert their possession and chances into goals, and Mourinho believes his side were by far the best.

"Lazio have the joy of victory, we have the calmness of having a team and a future," he said.

"I am very happy with my players' performance, with this new style that is being born, but obviously I can't be happy with the result, above all because as everyone saw it could have finished in a different way, such as 3-1 to us.

"Before they took the lead we had 12, 14 chances. They spent the time in defence and had a lot of luck, then they played in the final few minutes."

Mourinho added: "I have told my players one thing: we have the team.

"Without hypocrisy, one team played and the other won. Without hypocrisy, one team had 14 chances and the other won with luck and with three shots in total.

"If Lazio should continue having this luck they can also play for the Scudetto."

New boy Samuel Eto'o, who joined Inter as part of the swap deal that saw Ibrahimovic move to Barcelona, scored for the Nerazzurri, and Mourinho was impressed by the Cameroon striker's overall performance.

"He was very good," he said. "And, behind him, the whole squad did well.

"He is a fantastic player, he's not yet at his best, but he was able to stay on the pitch until the end, even more than foreseen, because he has quality and spirit."

Lazio coach Davide Ballardini enjoyed his first ever piece of silverware and praised his side for defeating the reigning Italian champions.

"It is very satisfying, as we got a great result against a wonderful team," said Ballardini, who replaced Delio Rossi this summer.

"Inter are ahead of us in so many elements, but with real focus, self-sacrifice and hard work, we managed to get an important result."

Lazio took the lead in fortunate circumstances as Mauro Zarate's free-kick took two deflections on its way through to Matuzalem, whose first effort was rebounded into his face by Julio Cesar with the ball cannoning back over the line.

Inter claimed on their website that they had been beaten "by a goal by Matuzalem's hand" and that the Nerazzurri "won - in style of play and spirit".

Lazio President Claudio Lotito accused Mourinho of being a bad loser.

"Someone made comments on the match which don't correspond to the reality," he said.

"That person needs to start retrieving the culture of losing, you need to know how to win and how to lose.

"It was a victory achieved for the pride of being able to wear the Lazio badge on the shirt.

"It was also for the responsibility of being able to send around the world the message that the world of football has changed, based on authentic values of sport and not only on the assumption that the more you spend the more you win.

"People who don't think so are old fashioned."

[Inter 1-2 Lazio]

Source: ESPN Star

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