Mourinho set for one final wind-up as Inter prepare for title showdown

Roma’s mantra over the last month or so ìIt’ll never happen but if it does Öî will finally be laid to rest one way or another this weekend.

The phrase has appeared on banners and has been printed up on T-shirts - and no doubt many of the 10,000-plus Giallorossi support travelling to Verona to will be reciting the lucky charm along the way.

While the Romans lay siege to Chievo’s Bentegodi stadium; heading along the motorway in the opposite direction will be the Inter tifosi en-route for Tuscany where they will be expecting a title party to take place.

It is north against south, the Capital against the financial powerbase, the villain against the hero and gripping stuff it promises to be indeed on a day of destiny.

In fact, so concerned are the local authorities in both Rome and Milan that total social collapse is only 90 minutes away that both AC Milan and Lazio have had their games switched to Saturday evening.

Their reasoning was it was better not to risk mayhem ensuing outside the San Siro and Olympic stadiums when either of the city rivals were crowned champions.

So, Milan and Lazio fans can make themselves scarce on Sunday and what ignominy it is for Milan not to mention Juventus whose traditional showdown has become no more than a TV schedule filler.

However, there was only ever going to be one prime-time and the tension has been cranking up all week to such an extent that radio stations in both cities have had to close their phone lines a few minutes after going on air to deal with the surge from those unable to keep their emotions in check.

And there has been plenty of speculation on how the afternoon will pan out; needless to say conspiracies have been fuelled like jet planes.

Of course, a mischievous Portuguese threw petrol on the fire by joking – well he said it was a tongue-in-cheek comment - that Roma would pay Siena to beat his side.

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It is a wonder Jose Mourinho didn’t mention that Siena’s team owner is called Mezzaroma or like Roma they sport a she-wolf on their shirts, but casting aspersions over the integrity of Italian football has been his favourite past time of late.

The usually serene Claudio Ranieri hit back by claiming that his nemesis was a ìloose cannon,î ready to go off unexpectedly one day.

The lovable old Roman doesn’t believe his rival is that special and has quizzed members of the press why they hype up an already over-sized ego.

That sense of self worth will go stellar on Sunday if Inter do the Double and it will be absolutely stratospheric if he lands the Champions League the following weekend – that could be grounds for a no-fly zone over the western Mediterranean.

Can the unthinkable happen to finally wipe that smug grin off Jose’s face?

Well, apart from Roma, Siena are the only side to have pushed Inter all the way at the San Siro - and although already relegated they will not roll over as Lazio did a few weeks ago.

In fact, for once Jose may be regretting opening his mouth although the way he has been making overtures to Real Madrid he is probably past caring what he says in Italy. 

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