Mourinho rumored to have clashed heads with some players prior to Roma exit

Andy Mattioli

More details are emerging in the Italian press regarding Jose Mourinho’s surprising dismissal from Roma on Tuesday morning.

The mood at Trigoria had been tense ever since the team came out defeated in the Derby with Lazio, when some players are said to have approached Roma Vice President Ryan Friedkin – who is frequently present at the club’s training grounds – and complained to him about the way they were being deployed by Mourinho on the pitch.

According to today’s edition of Corriere dello Sport, a clear example is the situation of this tension inside Roma’s dressing room can be linked with Chris Smalling: the defender, struggling with knee problems, had already argued with Mourinho in October, culminating in a broken relationship which prevented the veteran centre-back from stepping back on the pitch.

The handling of Smalling’s injury has been shrouded in mystery, with Mourinho recently declaring that “Smalling ruined my season.”

Smalling was not the only one to clash with the former Roma manager. Lorenzo Pellegrini, the captain, is also said to have aroused Mourinho’s dissatisfaction due to a recent change in attitude, despite having concrete problems related to injuries as an alibi.

Rick Karsdorp, temporarily ruled out as early as November 2022 after the match against Sassuolo, experienced another moment of tension immediately after the derby.

Additionally, Leonardo Spinazzola was not happy to be publicly criticized by Mourinho for a poor performance against Bologna.

The list of tensions continues with Renato Sanches, who was replaced after just 18 minutes at Dall’Ara and punished for unprofessional behavior. Mourinho’s difficulties in the dressing room appear to have been one of the key elements that contributed to his sacking.

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MatchDay 37
19 May 20:45