Mourinho previews Derby della Capitale: “I want to see Roma win tomorrow.”

Jose Mourinho of AS Roma
Andy Mattioli

Jose Mourinho addressed the media ahead of a crucial derby showdown that is set to take place tomorrow evening at the Stadio Olimpico. The Special One will face Maurizio Sarri and his men in a stadium that will reach maximum capacity.

“Everyone’s available for tomorrow,” said Mourinho given the recent rumors of Pellegrini’s questionable status due to a fever. “Pellegrini trained today without any problems and is available.”

“It’s a derby. It is never a match like all the others. I’ve played many derbies in my life and I’m used to these emotions.”

“The feeling you get around here is even better when the stadium is packed with supporters. For a while the fans could not attend these games but now they’re in it, just like the players, the two worlds merge, and it becomes a derby of the fans as well.” He added, “Football without fans, is not football. A derby without fans, is not a derby.”

On Zeman’s recent critical remarks toward him, Mourinho shook his head and laughed, “I can’t answer. I have won 25 trophies, whereas Zeman won 2 Serie B titles. I can understand critique from someone like Trappatoni, not Zeman.”

On the team’s approach to the derby: “The correct approach is always important. Always, not just in the derby. If you’re winning you must have the strength to maintain that result in your favor, if you’re losing you must have the strength to try to get something out of it until the very end.”

“If we want to go back to the first leg against Lazio it was 3-2 for them and we fought for a better result until the last second. The match against Juventus is infamous by now. In the last few minutes we could have equalized.”

“If this team has one characteristic that makes me believe in a better result, it is the fact that the team is always in it, never out of it.”

About his favorite derby moments, Mourinho said, “A derby is a derby. You don’t have to put yourself in the position of coach or player, but in the position of the fans that are living it.”

On what struck him the most since joining Roma:

“The affection I received even before arriving. Usually when a person comes to a club, affection is earned. You have to work hard to earn it, deserve it.”

“In my case with Roma it happened even before I set foot here. Even before the first workout. They [the supporters] seem to me to be people with a very special heart.”

“The Roma that I like best is the Roma that wins and tomorrow I want to see Roma win.”

Match Center

1/4 Final
11 Apr 21:00