NEWS
Wednesday February 19 2020
Fonseca: 'Still believe in Roma'

Roma coach Paulo Fonseca says he still believes in his side, despite results, and that Amadou Diawara is “feeling good” after returning to training.

The Giallorossi are on a poor run of form, having lost three consecutive games to Sassuolo, Bologna and Atalanta in Serie A.

They take on Gent tomorrow in the Round of 32 in the Europa League, with kick off at 20:00 GMT, and Fonseca says their recent form shouldn’t be a factor in the game.

“I’m only worried about what we need to do to win the game. We’ve had a good week,” said Fonseca in his pre-game press conference.

“There are signals from the team that we can do well.”

There has been speculation of a rift in the Roma locker room, but Fonseca downplayed any issues.

“The relationship between me and the squad is very good, as always. It is easy to invent issues in the changing room, like now. We are here to work honestly with no intention of hiding anything.

“It’s not fair to invent these things.”

Amadou Diawara is on the road to recovery after it looked like he might be out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.

“We are very optimistic with him. Two days ago he started to train with us.

“I have spoken with him after training and he told me that he felt good and wasn’t in any pain. This is important. We will see in the next few days.”

Roma’s defeat to Atalanta last weekend has left the team six points behind La Dea in the race for the final Champions League spot, and Fonseca says the Europa League could be a way in.

“This competition can still be a salvation for the Champions League, however we will continue to believe that it’s still possible to make it into the competition through the league.

“We have to return to being the team of before, without creating expectations.”

Fonseca states that despite recent defeats, he still has belief in his side.

“I think that we all know it isn’t easy to play against Atalanta. The team strategy wasn’t wrong, but on the ball we stopped playing.

“I don’t remember any team that has played against Atalanta that didn’t concede a goal. Defensively we weren’t bad.

“The coach who thinks they can play football against Atalanta thinks wrong.”

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