Fonseca calls for focus ahead of Bologna match: “We can’t focus on only one competition.”


Two days after his team’s sensational result against Ajax, Roma manager Paulo Fonseca stressed that his team can not look past tomorrow’s league match against Bologna.

The Giallorossi host the Dutch giants at the Stadio Olimpico on Thursday for the second leg of their Europa League tie after winning 2-1 on Thursday.

Despite the angst ahead of the European showdown, the Portuguese technician called for focus against the Rossoblu.

He began, “These are two different competitions, as I said before the game against Ajax, we have been inside the top four in Serie A throughout almost the entire season. Our target was the league. But it has to be said that there have been some big absences as well.”

”Furthermore, Serie A is a long competition with a lot of games. The Europa League has a group stage, yes, but then it is into straight knockout matches. I think there is a difference there. When the competition is longer, it can happen that a few false steps hurt.”

He continued, “Right now it is important we have to be thinking about the game against Bologna, and that’s all. My future? As I said, all that matters is tomorrow.”

“We can’t think anything other than that the next match is the most important one. We are focusing on Bologna.”

“It will be a tough game, but we are focused on all aspects of the opposition, not just one threat or area of strength. We know they are an aggressive side, with some quality players.”

Roma were given a boost ahead of tomorrow’s affair when it was revealed that Henrikh Mkhitaryan was called-up and returns from injury.

“Micki trained with the group today, but it’s unlikely that he starts tomorrow. This is also the case for Jordan (Veretout), who just returned from injury, so it’s better to be cautious.”

”As for Smalling, it’s unlikely that he’ll be able to return for the game against Ajax.”

“Pastore? He has been out for a long time. I think that he needs to come back and play when the time is right, in the right context and setting. But he already knows my thoughts.”

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