Lazio captain Tommaso Rocchi believes Roma are a better side without Francesco Totti going into this weekend's eagerly anticipated derby match.
Totti is suspended for one match after he was harshly red-carded for a non-existent slap on Lecce's Ruben Oliveira at the weekend.
The 34-year-old bet against his side yesterday out of superstition, insisting that Lazio will win with a penalty from Sergio Floccari.
When asked for his reaction, Rocchi said: "I respond that we would have been happier to see him on the pitch: perhaps his absence is an advantage for Roma seeing the results in recent derbies.
"Often the team that is better, who seems superior, usually has more to lose. Now we must erase everything that we have done up until now and prepare for the game in the best way.
"I am certain that we will play a great game. The level of Roma and Lazio seems equal to me.
"We are going into this game better than them. If we are top of the table it's because we deserve it," he concluded.