Radja Nainggolan: “Roma play better with De Rossi than with Mourinho.”

Andy Mattioli

Former Roma midfielder Radja Nainggolan was asked about his early impressions of Daniele De Rossi’s tenure as the Giallorossi’s head coach.

In an interview with Twitch channel ControCalcio, Nainggolan discussed the differences between De Rossi’s style of play compared to Mourinho’s.

“Did I expect him to get off to such a good start? Yes, and not because he’s a close friend of mine but because I am objective. He has Spalletti’s vision of football to which he adds his own ideas. Now Roma play good football, they play much better than when Mourinho was there.”

“Mourinho is a great coach because he won a lot in his career, but he wasn’t the right coach for how Roma played. I went to watch Roma-Salernitana on the first day of the season, I fell asleep at 2-2. His team didn’t take a shot on goal, they couldn’t seem to do anything.”

“Now Pellegrini is a brand new player. There must be a reason why players are now more productive and win matches very convincingly. This is thanks to De Rossi. Daniele, also knowing many of the players, used them for their qualities and they work much better with him in charge. Not only Pellegrini, but also Paredes. He too wasn’t expressing his best qualities under Mourinho.”

“Dybala? When De Rossi arrived he said that he is the only player who can do whatever he wants on the pitch because he makes the difference. Of course I would like Dybala in my team but for how many games would I have him available? It’s a question you would always ask yourself. Now Dybala is playing all the matches and is being managed in a different way. These are important things for a player.”

“Now he is handled perfectly. In a great team you need to have 15-18 starters. Now Roma can afford to let another player play in his place. There is Azmoun for example.”

“Should Lukaku stay at Roma? The way I am, and given the opportunity that Roma gave me, I would stay another year. Roma took Lukaku on the last day of the transfer market, with a heavy contract, and a team that was already in place and ready to go. Without Roma he would have remained at Chelsea without playing a single minute all season long.”

“If I were him I would show some gratitude towards Roma,” he added.

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MatchDay 36
12 May 20:45