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By ESPN Staff

Mancini clashes with Inter owner over derby tactics

MILAN, May 6 (Reuters) - Inter Milan coach Roberto Mancini has disagreed with club owner Massimo Moratti's assertion that the Serie A leaders were too cautious and lacked courage in Sunday's 2-1 derby defeat by AC Milan.

Inter could have retained their title with a victory but will now have to pick up three points against Siena on Sunday or at Parma in the final game of the season to be sure of the scudetto.

Mancini's relationship with Moratti has been under scrutiny since the 43-year-old coach said in March he wanted to leave at the end of the season only for Moratti to say the next day that Mancini had changed his mind.

"We have never played for a draw in the derby or in other games," Mancini told a news conference on Tuesday ahead of Wednesday's Italian Cup semi-final second leg at Lazio.

"I believe when you lose, everyone searches for a guilty party and that usually is the coach. If (Moratti) has seen it that way, he is free to do so, but I don't agree."

Former Chelsea coach Jose Mourinho has been heavily linked with the Inter post with Italian media unsure whether Mancini has totally changed his mind after March's outburst.

"I have a contract with Inter for the next three years, full stop. You are always asking the same question," Mancini said.

The coach added that Sweden striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who has just returned to training after a knee problem, is a big doubt for the Siena game.

"To see him on the field on Sunday seems to me quite difficult. I don't know what the situation is now or what it will be in a few weeks given that there is also Euro 2008, which he holds dear," Mancini added.