Roma captain Lorenzo Pellegrini congratulated his teammates for ‘knowing how to face up to difficult moments’ after knocking Ajax out of the Europa League quarter-final.
The 2-1 first leg win in Amsterdam proved decisive, and Edin Dzeko scored here to cancel out Brian Brobbey’s chip, confirming a 3-2 aggregate victory.
The Giallorossi will face Manchester United in the Europa League semi-final, with the first leg at Old Trafford on April 29.
“We knew that Ajax were a great team, but we proved that the growth process we’re on is continuing,” Pellegrini told Sky Sport Italia.
“We are happy, but it’s important to keep our euphoria contained, because there’s a semi-final to play. This means so much because we are trying to become great, to build ourselves up and that is the motivation in every match.”
Although Brian Brobbey opened the scoring, Pellegrini had a big chance to put Roma in front during the early stages.
“We started well and created the first real chance, I slipped and couldn’t put enough power on the ball. This team knows how to face up to difficult moments and I want to give such a big round of applause to my teammates.
“If we want to achieve something great, we have to beat the best. We’ll enjoy this evening, but from tomorrow start focusing on the next test.”
Riccardo Calafiori provided the assist for Dzeko’s goal with a run down the left, standing in for injured Leonardo Spinazzola.
“I told Riccardo before the game that he just needed to play it simple, do what he knows how to do, because he has such talent and just needed to stay calm.”