Zdenek Zeman insisted he was “happy with the performance” as Roma created – and wasted – more opportunities than Napoli.
“It is a step backwards in terms of result, but the team tried to play and put the opposition under pressure,” he said of the 4-1 defeat.
“Of course goals count in football, we didn’t score them and Napoli did. I am generally happy with the performance, though.
“We defend zonally on set plays and clearly got something wrong on Edinson Cavani’s goal. We conceded there, it happens.”
Mattia Destro wasted several chances before he was replaced by Pablo Daniel Osvaldo.
“If Destro did not score, then it means he was hasty. I am satisfied with his performance too, as he put himself forward and created some opportunities. He moved well and it’s a shame he didn’t finish them off, as a striker lives for the goal. He has quality and we have faith in him.”
Roma spent the Christmas break in Florida and returned on Thursday, so some suggested they could suffer from jet lag.
“I don’t think jet lag had any influence. We created six or seven chances, more than our opponents, but we did not convert them and they did, so that is football.
“We knew Napoli played on the counter-attack and they managed it straight away with a fast move. In my view they scored some great goals and we have to applaud them.
“Cavani is very quick, certainly quicker than Burdisso and Castan, so we tried not to leave him in that one-on-one situation.”
The Giallorossi could’ve closed up on the leading pack in a weekend where Juventus, Inter and Fiorentina all lost.
“Every time we don’t win is a wasted opportunity. My team plays to win, but then mistakes are made and today we paid for the errors in front of goal. I am happy that the side tries to create and attack.
“It’s not easy to work in Rome, but we try to do our work and in my view the team never gave up. I have faith in this squad, the players believe and I hope we can all continue believing to the end.”