Roma boss Paulo Fonseca and right back Alessandro Florenzi spoke today ahead of tomorrow’s Europa League clash against Istanbul Basaksehir. These are their words:
What does this competition represent for you? And how far do you think you can go?
It is an important competition, in this first round, we are aiming to advance. There are strong teams, we want to go as far as possible and play with ambition.
Are you thinking about turnover or do you prefer to use the same starters?
You’ll know that once we play. I am thinking of making some changes, but always with as much guaranteed security as possible to reach our goal. It is impossible not to take into account future commitments.
What can Pastore give to this team?
Pastore is a player who is coming off a difficult season with injuries and is returning to his best condition. He has quality, he is intelligent and has technical ability. I hope he can respond well from a physical point of view, but you can see that he has a high level of quality. Pastore has always been an exemplary, honest professional. We need to understand his circumstances, but he is special and can be very useful.
Roma played well for an hour against Sassuolo, then there was a physical decline.
I think the team is doing well physically. Against Genoa, we grew into the match but we you can point to the fact we had guys like Florenzi, Dzeko and Kolarov coming from their international duties. I thought the team responded well.
Tomorrow you will play the fourth match at the Olimpico. How much does this help?
Playing at home has a different flavor. We have a common goal whether we play at home or not: to play our football whoever the opponent is. Obviously, though, you feel differently and more at home.
Do you feel ready to play as a winger or do you want to play as a fullback now?
I’m focused on Roma, when the manager asks, I’ll give 100% whether I play in attack, at the back, left or right, it makes no difference.
There have been so many muscle injuries. What do you players think?
There are so many factors. It can be the matches, the stress, the conditions of the pitch. As you have seen, they spent a lot of money to redo the pitch in Trigoria because the club thought it might affect injuries, which there were too many of last year. We are trying to reduce this trend, but there is not a single suspect.