Mourinho previews Cagliari clash and speaks on January transfers

Andy Mattioli

Jose Mourinho sat down to address the media in a press conference leading up to Roma’s weekend fixture vs Cagliari.

On whether Cagliari can avoid relegation:

“I think their position in the league standings is a momentary thing, I don’t think they will be there at the end of the season. “

“They have scored 6 points in the last two games, they come to Rome to try to collect more points. They are a team capable of playing against teams with more potential.”

“We have made a point in the last three and we have to score at least 4 points in the next 4 game. Having the courage to play the next game is never easy when you come from a defeat like the one on Sunday. I’m sorry there are only 5,000 spectators, let’s try to give something to the people in love with Roma who can’t come to the stadium.”

On where Oliveira fits and whether he can be the team’s new penalty-taker:

“I haven’t thought about it yet, it’s something we have to decide. We have worked on a lot of things this week, but not on set pieces. We have tried to give newcomers more tactical knowledge this week.”

“Let me tell you that I never thought it was possible to borrow Sergio in this phase of the transfer market, Porto are playing to win the league and the Europa League. When I got the only possible chance from Tiago with Sergio, I accepted right away.”

“But Sergio is a different player, with character and personality, he is not as you define him in Italy: a regista. I immediately thought he would be an important player for us, multifunctional, who shoots from outside the box, who can improve the squad and the options we have.”

“This market window was positive for us, we took chances early and they (Maitland-Niles and Oliveira) improve our options a lot. Sergio in all tactical systems in midfield can do everything, for our squad and transfer profile it is important, he improves little by little.”

“With six months of competition ahead with many games to play, changing players who have almost never played with two who will play instead is important.”

On Veretout’s poor form:

“In normal conditions, no player has to be so important, until last week Karsdorp was fundamental, today he is not. With this many players in midfield we are quite balanced and you can give those players and Veretout some rest.”

On whether Roma will try to complete a third signing:

“I am happy and I thank the director for the effort made to improve the squad. I am a smart person who thinks we have made a good market on our conditions for this situation right now.”

“We have found two options that improve the squad profile. They can play in different positions, so with two players we have improved.”

“We think of Calafiori, Borja and their minutes played, the two new signings will play more, so we have improved. I don’t think a third one can arrive, we are on January 15th and we have made two signings, I’m happy.”

On the match against Juventus and team mistakes:

“They did exactly what I didn’t ask for. It is one thing to press high, one thing to press as a whole. Dybala’s goal was the second time it happened. The midfielder on the right side was pressing the ball and the second one was not covering. We did the opposite of what we worked on during the week.”

On Spinazzola’s recovery:

“I’d like to know who is the phenomenon who wrote that Spina would be back in November after that injury. If he declared that himself, he is a madman.”

“A very hard injury is impossible to recover in that short amount of time. From the first day I thought that this season I would not have Spinazzola, if he arrives on May 1st or mid-April I’m happy.”

“It is too difficult an injury to recover. I am calm and happy, we try to pass on a correct message to him. He must feel comfortable.”

On how the team reacted to his comments following the 3-4 loss to Juve:

“They took it well. People who trust my experience and the process we are going through, I see positive-minded people when we speak. What I tell the press I also tell them but going deeper into their minds.”

“They are people who want to improve, are not touchy and accept criticism. This is why I am pleased to work with these people. The psychological situation was obvious to everyone, but in that period in which we suffered the three goals we made a foul, only I make four of them. That’s how I play.”

“We are a little naïve. Sergio knew about us and said they are so young here, even Pellegrini and Mancini, little by little with patience we can improve.”

Match Center

MatchDay 33
22 Apr 18:30