Fonseca speaks ahead of Roma-Juve, reveals Kumbulla will start


Roma manager Paulo Fonseca attended his pre-match press conference early this afternoon to discuss his team’s clash tomorrow against Juve in Rome.

Dzeko could have been a Juve player while Milik already underwent his Roma medical. Have you talked to Dzeko recently?

Yes, I’ve talked to Dzeko several times, he’s very motivated. He has trained well and will play tomorrow.

Kumbulla remained on the bench against Verona: is he ready to play from the start? Will you always use the 3-man defence?

If nothing happens until the match, the starting team will be: Mirante, Santon, Mancini, Ibanez, Kumbulla, Spinazzola, Veretout, Pellegrini, Mkhitaryan, Pedro and Dzeko.

In Verona, did you ask Dzeko to come on and he refused?

It’s not true.

You talked about year zero last year, now in your second year, where are we?

We are better. If we can make a comparison: the first game of last year, compared to the first of this season, seeing the two games — it is clear that the team is better. For me, this is important.

It’s only a few days before the end of the transfer market, how many players are missing from Roma?

I am totally focused on tomorrow’s match, I don’t want to talk about the transfer market.

What has changed on Smalling?

It’s 24 hours before an important match, I am only focused on the match. It’s a difficult, important match — we worked a lot this week for it. I have faith in the players who will play tomorrow and we just have to think about this.

Have you spoken to Friedkin? What is the objective for the season?

From the first day they got here, I talk to them every day. We are all working together to make a stronger team. The goal is to do better than last year.

Bruno Peres has been training with the group recently: what physical condition are he and Karsdorp in?

Bruno Peres started working with us this week, he is not ready to play from the start. Karsdorp did individual work yesterday, he is not ready.

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