Mourinho laments second place UEL group finish, comments on “emotional” Pisilli goal

RomaPress Staff

Roma boss Jose Mourinho commented on his side’s performance in the Europa League group stage following their final match of the round, winning 3-0 over Sheriff this evening.

The Giallorossi finished second in Group G, two points behind Slavia Praha, and progressed to the playoff round of the competition—something the Special One insisted is their own fault.

“The bottom line is it’s our own fault we finished second in the group. We played one horrible match, the one in Prague, and this is ultimately what decided the group,” he told Sky Sport.

“We had three comfortable wins at home and two wins on the road, but we can’t play that match in Prague the way we did. We’re paying the price and it’s our fault, this payment comes in the form of two additional games for a squad that can’t afford them.”

He continued, “Now we’ll play two extra games against an important team that dropped down from the Champions League, even if it’s against a team not excited to be in the competition.”

The teams Roma could potentially face in February’s playoff round include Benfica, Braga, Feyenoord, Galatasaray, Lens, Young Boys and Shakhtar Donetsk.

“Look, Benfica were in the quarterfinals last year and I won’t deny they’ll be super frustrated to go down into the Europa League,” he said.

“However, when you look at teams like Lens, Feyenoord, and Galatasaray you understand they’re clubs who have a responsibility to take the Europa League seriously. There’s no PSG or Manchester United but there’s still excellent teams.”

Adding, “Hopefully we don’t have a repeat of last season where we had to face RB Salzburg, Real Sociedad then Feyenoord and it seemed like we’d won with a team from the Faroe Islands.”

Mourinho was then asked about Niccolo Pisilli, who scored a 93rd minute debut goal for his boyhood club and burst into tears after finding the back of the net.

He admitted, “Of course I’m moved by his tears. Compared to other clubs, it feels incredible to hand a youngster their debut with Roma because so many of them grew up here and came to this stadium with their fathers and grandfathers.”

Finally, he discussed the bevy of injuries his side have faced throughout the course of the season.

“If we always had everyone available? Then we’d 100% we’re able to compete against anybody, we fear nobody. Unfortunately, we’re forced to constantly move forward despite all these problems to the squad,” stated Mourinho confidently.

“I’ve decided to show courage and to not keep moaning about it. Now we’ll face a Bologna side this weekend without Dybala and Lukaku, but we’re still going to give everything we have.”

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MatchDay 37
19 May 20:45