Sunday September 23 2018
EDF: 'Roma lack fire in the belly'

Eusebio Di Francesco openly blamed his Roma players for lacking “determination and fire in the belly” as they lost 2-0 to Bologna.

The Rossoblu hadn’t scored a single goal and managed just one point in the first four rounds, yet won comfortably at the Dall’Ara this afternoon.

“You all seem to think you know the answers, so maybe I should ask you questions? We always end up talking about numbers, statistics, but not the determination and fire in the belly,” the Coach told Sky Sport Italia.

“If you have 74 per cent possession and lose 2-0, it means something is missing in your attitude. If you lose every duel with Bologna, then you weren’t determined enough.

“I genuinely can’t tell you what system we’re going to use next time, because first and foremost I need to find the right men and then work around their characteristics.

“I don’t think a tackle is a tactical issue, it’s about desire, timing and fire. You can’t teach that, I’ve been a player and I know what it means to be out there.

“I am trying everything to shake them up. We missed goals from a couple of yards today. We had 280 crosses with only Edin Dzeko in the box, which is something I don’t want.

“Perhaps the lads are so eager to score that they aren’t sharp enough in their choices. I have to change. I have to change. We lack defensive solidity and this brings us to embarrassing performances.

“The thing that drives me crazy is that this season we had more time to work in pre-season training, yet the defensive moments we practiced over and over again weren’t there.

“This is why I tried to change things. We’ve got seven games in a row coming up and I could change before because it didn’t matter how many players we changed, we were all working in the same direction.

“If something doesn’t snap inside the players, they we’re going to struggle. We could just sit there in front of the goal and hope the right cross comes in, but that is not my philosophy of football.”

The second goal was a classic counter-attack with Federico Santander allowed to go clear on goal.

“A player must be a pessimist, especially a defender, and be in the position where you think the ball will be if something goes wrong. We were too slow to get back and cover today.”

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