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Mancini dismissal confirmed by Inter

  • Story Highlights
  • Serie A champions Inter Milan confirm dismissal of coach Roberto Mancini
  • Mancini allegedly fired for comments made after defeat to Liverpool in March
  • Former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho favorite to take over at the San Siro
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(CNN) -- Serie A champions Inter Milan have confirmed the dismissal of coach Roberto Mancini, opening the way for former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho to replace him.

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Mancini guided Inter Milan to the Italian league title for three successive seasons.

Ironically, the 43-year-old Mancini, who guided Inter to three successive Italian league titles, is now the favorite to take Mourinho's former job at Stamford Bridge.

Inter -- who won the first of their three titles in 2006 because those above them were demoted or deducted points over the matchfixing scandal -- released a statement about the sacking.

"Inter Milan have informed Roberto Mancini that he has been relieved of his role as coach, especially because of his comments that he was not going to stay after the end of the season following the Champions League tie against Liverpool on March 11," read their statement.

Mancini, however, rescinded those comments the following day declaring that he had made them in the heat of the moment following Inter's elimination from the competition, losing 3-0 on aggregate.

Inter's reasons for sacking Mancini appear less credible after club president Massimo Moratti announced that the coach had changed his mind about leaving at the end of the season.

"I've had a talk with Mancini, who confirmed to me that he wanted to stay at Inter next year to see out his contract. He wants to win the Champions League for us next season," Moratti said on March 12. "Mancini's words surprised me, I didn't expect it and even less so I believe the people close to him."

Mourinho, nicknamed 'The Special One' for guiding Porto to the Champions League in 2004 and then Chelsea to two Premier League titles, would not come cheap, but the exit of Mancini has cost Inter dear too as his contract, which runs till 2012, will leave him 24 million euros richer as compensation.

However, Mancini was unable to make Inter into viable Champions League contenders despite the three Serie A titles.

Mancini is the ninth coaching casualty under Moratti, following Ottavio Bianchi, Roy Hodgson, Luigi Simoni, Mircea Lucescu, Marcello Lippi, Marco Tardelli, Hector Cuper and Alberto Zaccheroni.

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