Mancini: At least Inter are a team now

The Nerazzurri missed out on Europe despite beating Empoli in a seven-goal thriller and their coach was happy to have provided some entertainment

Roberto Mancini believes his Inter side are finally beginning to gel as a team despite missing out on a Europa League spot.

A double from Mauro Icardi helped the home side to a thrilling 4-3 win over Empoli at San Siro on Sunday but Sampdoria’s draw with Parma means they cling on to the final European place – assuming Genoa are ultimately declined their Uefa licence.

Mancini was frustrated to have failed to breach Serie A’s top six but was at least content to provide an entertaining spectacle.

“It didn’t matter much, but at least we were able to play a game which was entertaining for people,” he told Radio Rai.

“We’re working. The results, unfortunately, were negative but at least the team has become a team. We can definitely work in pre-season and improve a lot.”

Icardi and Luca Toni finished the campaign as joint-top scorers on 22 each – though the Argentine reached his tally from two fewer appearances – and Mancini paid tribute to both forwards.

“Toni and Icardi have scored the same goals. Luca is 38 but he has the enthusiasm of a kid and you can’t score all those goals without that. Icardi was as good as him,” he said.

Rodrigo Palacio, meanwhile, is confident a good pre-season and strong showing in the transfer window can set up a much better campaign in 2015-16.

“It’s a shame not to have reached the Europa League, but we scrapped until the end,” he said.

“Now our aim must be to learn as much as we can from Mancini for next season. We also hope that we can get strong players, who can help us improve.

“We made every effort to help Icardi score, so he and Toni could be top scorers.”

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