MILAN (Reuters) – Sampdoria coach Claudio Ranieri has apologised after some of his team’s supporters reportedly made insulting chants about the city of Naples during Monday’s Serie A match against Napoli.

“I’m so sorry, especially since I’m very close to Naples,” he told reporters following his team’s 4-2 defeat.

“I apologise to all the Neapolitan fans, obviously our fans were angry with the referee and took it out on those who had nothing to do with it.”

Known officially as territorial discrimination, insulting chants about Naples are common at Italian matches and are an offence under Serie A’s disciplinary code.

The Corriere dello Sport said the chanting was heard throughout the second half but play was not stopped.

The 68-year-old Ranieri spent two seasons at Napoli earlier in his career, one of around 20 teams he has coached.

(Reporting by Brian Homewood, editing by Ed Osmond)

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