An interview with Roma attacker Nicolo Zaniolo appeared in the latest edition of AS Roma Match Program ahead of Sunday’s clash against Bologna.
How much has Nicolò Zaniolo grown?
A year has passed and I’ve grown a lot, but I still have growing to do as a person and as a player. The club, the manager and the staff are helping me and I’ll do my best to continue on this path.
You’re more at ease when you play as a trequartista. When you’re on the wing, though, it seems you’re able to asset your physicality.
Trequartista is the role I prefer, but even when I’m on the wing I feel good, as I demonstrated in the Europa League. I’ll play any role the manager decides to use me in and I’ll do so with the utmost level of concentration and I’ll give my best to contribute to the team’s victories.
You’re coming off two wins in a row in the league and Europe.
We’ve played two perfect matches. In the league, the entire team was devastating in the first half, but then we slightly lowered our concentration in the second half — that’s an area where we have to grow. We have to continue on this path.
What sort of player is Mkhitaryan?
Mkhitaryan needs no introduction, he is a formidable footballer and he impressed me with his humility and spirit of sacrifice that he emits on the pitch.
An important cycle of the season has arrived with several matches all close together.
We have a very important cycle ahead of us, we must continue on the right foot.
What impressed you most about Paulo Fonseca?
He has clear ideas, he has a lot of character, he says things to your face and is not afraid of anything. I was very impressed, he is working very well and we will give our everything to do all we can.
Is there one aspect in particular that you were asked to work on?
He asks me to pay attention to the defensive phase, the attackers must help the defenders. It is important and I will try to put his directives into practice.
Now there’s the match against Bologna, who are in good form.
We have a tough game ahead of us, Bologna is doing very well, they have 7 points and are near the top of the table. We have to beat them and climb in the standings where we deserve.
Is this another test to see how much the team has grown?
Our way of playing doesn’t have to change. We’re Roma — we’re strong and must impose our way playing whoever we play.
Your objective for the season?
My goal is to continue to grow, both on a football and human level and put myself totally at the disposal of the team to achieve important goals.