Be very careful when using alternative words for the word “said”.
Don’t overdo it with colorful words to convey what your characters are saying.
That should come across in the content of the dialog.
The word “said” seamlessly disappears for the reader, allowing the dialog to flow.
Junking it up with words like “snarled, growled, blurted, sputtered, bragged,
assumed, expressed, gibbered … sounds amateurish. So use those words sparingly.