Friday January 22 2021
Fonseca: 'Dzeko is injured and will not play'

Roma coach Paulo Foseca said Edin Dzeko will not be available against Spezia on Saturday and stressed he feels ‘the support of the President’.

The Giallorossi are going through a difficult moment and Fonseca aims to end a winless run of three games when they play the newly promoted side for the second time this week.

But Fonseca said he is not affected by the rumours regarding Max Allegri and Maurizio Sarri being considered for his position at the helm.

“I have always felt the support of the President, in all this time that I’m here,” Fonseca said at a press conference. “Even today, we spoke and I felt the support of him again.

“For me, it’s not a question.”

La Repubblica reported yesterday that there’s a ‘difficult and tense’ relationship between captain Edin Dzeko and the Portuguese coach.

Fonseca said Dzeko is out injured for the match this weekend and revealed both Pedro Rodriguez and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are struggling.

“Unfortunately, we have some problems with Pedro and Mkhitaryan, who are in doubt,” he said.

“Dzeko received a knock in the match. Yesterday he was not comfortable and will not be ready for the game.

“I’m focused on tomorrow. I must focus on the players who will play tomorrow.

“Pedro will not be able to play. We will test Mkhitaryan’s conditions today to see if he can play tomorrow.”

Spezia won 4-2 after extra time against Roma in the Coppa Italia, but the Giallorossi would have lost the match by default after having used too many substitutes.

The coach was asked how it’s possible to make such a mistake at Roma’s level and replied: “It’s true, we always have to know the rules.

“But the fact is that the rules change according to the competitions, there are competitions where this rule was different.

“I don’t want to run away from my responsibilities, but I have to focus on the match tomorrow.”

And Fonseca didn’t want to confirm or deny the rumours about the disputes after the match.

“I’ve been here for a year and a half. I know how things work,” he added. “When we lose, many try to hurt Roma. I don’t want to contribute to this speculation.”

Fonseca expects another difficult match against Spezia tomorrow.

“It will be a very difficult match, Spezia have their own identity and I don’t think they will change their intentions,” he said.

“It will certainly be difficult, with a team that wants to have the ball. We are preparing in order to win.”