serie a news

Lippi: Ranieri can say what he wants

September 24, 2010
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Former Italy coach Marcello Lippi has refused to be drawn into a war of words with Roma boss Claudio Ranieri.

Marcello Lippi
GettyImagesMarcello Lippi is itching for a return to management

Roma deny Lippi talk

Reports in Italy have claimed Lippi has been lined up to replace Ranieri, who has endured a difficult start to the season, and the former Chelsea boss said he believed there was truth to the stories.

Ranieri referenced the fact that Lippi is said to have met with Juventus general manager Jean-Claude Blanc during his time at the club.

However, Lippi told La Repubblica: "Ranieri can say what he wants. I have no intention of speaking about football. I am now out of that world. I said what I had to say after the World Cup."

Meanwhile, Roma president Rosella Sensi has launched an attack on officials in Serie A after the 2-1 defeat to Brescia. Ranieri and several players have spoken out about several recent decisions, with the three-match ban given to Philippe Mexes having provoked anger at the club.

"The FIGC and the Lega must intervene on the refereeing situation," Sensi said on the club's official website. "The designators do not seem capable of resolving the problems by themselves, so someone has to help them before football pays a heavy price.

"I hope that FIGC president Giancarlo Abete and Lega president Maurizio Beretta can dedicate themselves to fixing a situation where, in the absence of video evidence, matches are officiated even by blind people.

"If somebody thinks Roma can be taken for a ride while they wait for the new owners to settle in, then it's important to make clear that this team has owners and directors capable of evaluating the behaviour of its players, just as its opponents, referees, assistants and President of the AIA.

"Roma had never previously put together as many contentious incidents as seen in the first 45 minutes against Brescia. We pinned them back into their own half, yet reached the break 1-0 down and with three bookings."

Referees' Association (AIA) president Marcello Nicchi has shown sympathy with the club.

"It is very likely that the referee, Russo, will be rested for the next round," he said. "It's a shame about the officiating in Brescia-Roma.

"From a certain perspective, I can understand the protests from Roma and they have reason to be angry, as sometimes mistakes happen when you least expect them."