Sampdoria coach Claudio Ranieri admitted Romelu Lukaku’s absence from the Inter starting XI was key to their 2-1 victory today.
Lukaku was left on the bench as a precautionary measure by Antonio Conte after he was forced off through injury during Sunday’s win over Crotone, despite tests on Tuesday ruling out a serious injury for the Belgian international.
Sampdoria went into the half-time break leading 2-0 and the game finished 2-1 to them after Stefan de Vrij pulled one back for the visitors, whose eight-game winning run in Serie A was ended by this result.
“Having Lukaku out gave us a bit of help,” Ranieri told Sky Sport Italia after the win at Marassi.
“If he had been on the pitch from the beginning we would have suffered more.”
The match at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris was played in treacherous conditions and the state of the pitch got progressively worse as the game played, something which made playing that little bit harder.
Ranieri touched on the condition of the pitch and offered some advice to those in charge of the club on how to protect the pitch.
“The pitch at the Marassi was in terrible condition, it always rains in Genoa, how long does it take to buy a pitch cover?”
Ranieri, who coached Inter during the 2011-12 season, had the following to add about his former employers performance against his Samp side.
“Inter tried to win it,” he conceded.
“They are very dangerous in the final 30 minutes, they have won so many games in the final minutes, this is an important win for us.”