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Ranieri holds head high as Roma miss out
Roma coach Claudio Ranieri congratulated Inter Milan on their Serie A title triumph, but stopped short of saying well done to Jose Mourinho.

The two rival managers have sniped at each other this season during their teams' neck-and-neck race for the Scudetto, which was decided today when Inter edged Siena 1-0 to finish two points clear of Roma.

"My compliments from the bottom of my heart to (Inter president Massimo) Moratti," said Ranieri, after his team's 2-0 triumph at Chievo.

"He has created a great team and I wish Inter the best of luck in Europe. I hope they bring the Champions League trophy to Italy next weekend. Inter have won the title with loyalty and we have nothing to recriminate."

When asked about Mourinho, who has been linked with a move to Real Madrid this summer, Ranieri said: "He is young, he is improving. Will I miss him if he left Inter? I probably would do. He is improving because before he offended me while now he just quotes literary works."

The Portuguese coach last week quoted Jean-Paul Sartre's Nausea when responding to Ranieri's comment that he was bored of Mourinho's taunts.

Ranieri did have plenty to say on his team's campaign.

"I have to compliment my players," he said. "I remembered the pressure and the fears in my first few days at Roma.

"But my players have brought this Serie A to life and people have watched us with sympathy. We have lost points along the way but we have won many games coming from behind. My players have been exceptional."

Under Ranieri, who replaced Luciano Spalletti earlier this season, the Giallorossi went on a 23-match unbeaten run to reach the Serie A summit last month for the first time since 2007.

Their 2-1 win over city rivals Lazio allowed the Romans to leapfrog Inter into first place and fuelled hopes of a first title since 2001.

However, their stay at the top was shortlived as Ranieri's team lost 2-1 to Sampdoria on April 25 and Inter capitalised.

"We only made a mistake in the last 15 minutes of that game against Sampdoria," added Ranieri. "Probably against Samp we played the best first half of our entire season. "But I have no regrets. We have collected 80 points in 36 games and it has been an exceptional campaign. It's not easy to repeat a season like this one."
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