Mourinho discusses Roma’s ambition in Empoli win: “We refused to lose again.”

Andy Mattioli

Roma return to winning ways with an important win over Empoli on Monday night. Jose Mourinho’s men were able to scrap the previous two losses and impose themselves away from home in Tuscany.

The Special One discussed the team’s perseverance just a few days after losing their first Europa League match with Ludogorets.

“It’s important for Tammy Abraham to help us both offensively and defensively,” he told Sky Sport after the final whistle, when asked about the striker’s contribution on the other end of the pitch. “He must do so when the team struggles to play out from the back.”

“The problem arises when he gets tired,” Mourinho continued. “But, tonight we refused to lose again. We did not want to make it three losses in a row.”

“We had ambition tonight. And scoring against their goalie tonight was nothing short of a miracle. He looked like the best goal-keeper in the world.”

“We could have won differently. If we go 1-3 it becomes easier to manage but we weren’t able to do so,” Mourinho said referring to Lorenzo Pellegrini’s missed penalty.

“After the three points lost, it was important to win. In the last few minutes we wanted to manage the game. Seven minutes of injury time for a team that is holding onto a win is a lot of time.”

“Congratulations to [Empoli coach Paolo] Zanetti: they have a team that is difficult to play against.”

“As a team we’re struggling,” Mourinho continued, pointing at the long list of injuries. “There is only one Zaniolo. I take this opportunity to say what I told him on the bench: I told him, ‘Thanks for being here.’ When we went up 1-2 he was ready to go in and take risks despite his recent injury.”

“We need Wijnaldum: Matic and Cristante are great players, but they are very similar. Even with Karsdorp and Zalewski unavailable it becomes an issue going forward.”

“But,” Mourinho concluded. “I can finally say that on Thursday we play at home.”

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