Tuesday May 4 2021
Three things Mourinho must fix at Roma

The Special One is back in Serie A, and Owen Diana highlights a trio of problems that the Portuguese must solve to get Roma back on track.

In a shocking turn of events, Jose Mourinho has been hired as Roma’s new boss. The 58-year old will hope to turn La Lupa into title contenders, but he can be under no illusions as to the size of the task he faces.

A man accustomed to managing super clubs will take over a side set for a 7th-placed finish in Serie A, and with that in mind, here are the three most prominent tasks in Mourinho’s tray.

Defensive deficiencies

At their best, Paulo Fonseca’s Roma was capable of dazzling attacking displays that drew plaudits from fans and neutrals alike. However, a wretched defensive record ultimately eclipsed those pretty attacking patterns and ensured that the former Shakhtar strategist was not able to qualify for the Champions League in either of his two campaigns in charge.

La Lupa’s leaky backline conceded 51 times last season in Serie A, and they’ve already surpassed that total with four matches still to play this term (53 goals conceded). Shooting for a Champions League spot is nearly impossible with such an error-prone backline. The Giallorossi have conceded more than 100 goals over two seasons with the former Shakhtar tactician in the dug-out.

Mourinho is known for being a conservative coach, and a heavy dose of pragmatism will be needed if the Portuguese hopes to reinforce his rearguard.

Struggles against the big boys

Over the last two years, the Giallorossi have become a flat-track bully. An inability to beat superior sides has been a recurring theme of the Fonseca regime, and Mourinho must find a way for his charges to compete better against the cream of the crop.

Fonseca’s only win against the top four in 2019-20 was a 3-1 final round success over a heavily rotated Juventus that had already secured the Scudetto. That represented a poor return for Roma, but things have taken a turn for the worse this campaign.

La Lupa are winless in 12 games against the current top eight (six draws, six losses) with a goal difference of -15. Heavy defeats against the likes of Atalanta, Napoli and Lazio have underlined the distance between the capital club and their direct competitors.

Injury issues

Although Mourinho’s main focus will be on the training pitch, he will have to give plenty of attention to the treatment table as well. La Lupa’s attempts to juggle domestic and European competition have proved futile in the face of a growing injury crisis, with a host of key names spending significant time in the infirmary over recent months.

The muscle injuries that forced off Jordan Veretout and Leonardo Spinazzola inside the first 37 minutes at Old Trafford have shone a spotlight on Fonseca’s medical staff and left the Friedkins considering changes in that department. Money must be spent this summer to renovate a subpar squad, but the players that can still help the cause must be kept fit.


Have your say...
they should not buy any players he suggest as he is quite rubbish at picking players. He is better at coaching players that the previous manager brought to the club. Hopefully this will see him revert to the Mourinho of Porto or even Braga where much was not expected and he can bring in youngsters, play reasonably attacking and attractive football. Stop relying on old players and athletes but proper footballers. Doubt it very much though as this dude is done and has been for 6 years or more now
on the 8th May, 2021 at 12:39pm
He used to be 1 of my favourite managers but he is now just a caricature. His brand of football has never been easy on the eye but when he wanted his team to play they did so very effectively and with pace as well as entertainment. Recently he has just been a joke, the football so awful, tactics that were used in the 50s. But he is box office and for whatever reason big teams keep hiring him. Knowing his 3rd season failures why he keeps getting offered 3 years and more is beyond me. As for Roma
on the 8th May, 2021 at 12:34pm
The title of this blog should be Four things Mourinho must fix at Roma.

No 1. His attitude
on the 7th May, 2021 at 8:49am
Feeling a bit sorry for Fonseca. He had style and class and I definitely preferred him to Spaletti always whining like such a sore loser. Roma should have rather spent some money on improving the squat, than fire him. Imagine if he’d been coaching the team from 5 years ago! Wishing Mou the best of luck though.
on the 7th May, 2021 at 8:28am
Mou didn’t do bad at Man U - FA Cup, 2 in PL and EL win. If he achieves that with Roma he’ll get the keys to the Quirinale. Spurs wasn’t great. Mourinho has certainly upped Roma’s “value’ (like Ronaldo to Juve initially) so this could be a business move by the owners - increase the value of the brand as a first step. Roma are ranked 14 in the UEFA coefficient so they have been slowly climbing - break the top 10 and that will be a real achievement.
on the 7th May, 2021 at 5:44am
ROMA collapsed like a pyramid scam...remember when they were legit title contenders, were in CL, had world all star talents, Salah Allison Kolarov El Shar Naing' etc. had a NIKE deal, boasted great italian legend player in Totti along with DDR, had a new stadio that was promised by 2017!

...well that all is gone! thats why im amazed they even made to semis/in top half of table. Mou is about 4 years too late. but hey lets see how long before he quits / is fired. juve missed golden chance 4 him
on the 6th May, 2021 at 10:56pm
This is Mou's attempt to rebuild his rep. If he can get flailing roma into the CL or better, he will be praised as a saviour just as Garcia was after that 10 game run.

Mou knows policitcs which is why he has already contacted De Rossi. Get the ultras with him immediately. Porbably will call Totti too.

Sure it'll all fall apart, but he'll have an agreement with Munich or something by then.

Enjoy the ride I say. The journey is as important as the destination
on the 6th May, 2021 at 5:41pm
Another embarrassing score tonight would literally tip me over the edge. I think it is so funny that there were actually people who thought Roma were gonna win this tie are even more delude that the powers that decided Mourinho was the man for the job. What a joke Roma are and what a joke serie A has become.
on the 6th May, 2021 at 3:45pm
Here we are, yet another nail in the Serie A coffin. A once great manager who is about 6 years out of date coming in on big wages. Yes you could say at least he's a big name for the league. But his style of football is the complete opposite of what Fonseca was trying which makes half the players now redundant. I'm not a Roma fan but I liked the Italian core they were building. Now Pellegrini will be marginalised for Matic, Eric Dier will come in for Mancini, Zaniolo may as well retire. Shame
on the 6th May, 2021 at 9:12am
3 things Mourinho needs to fix with Roma

1) Everything
2) Everything else
3) Borja's Haircut
on the 6th May, 2021 at 7:37am
I hate Mou & honestly believed he'd coach Roma someday, making me stop following them for a while... (I'd resent him even if he'd bring Scudetto.)

But this is different --I only expected him to come with a road already paved & a Roma on a rise, NEVER like this!!!
What a surprising & bold move from José; I can't help but cheer for his bravery to succeed.

Also, this really is AMAZING for Serie A. It was all over the news, everywhere!
Even Tuttosport had Mou on front cover! UNREAL! :)
on the 6th May, 2021 at 12:54am
2. Why did José accept Roma? Why the rush?? He'd still get paid by Tottenham for a YEAR OF VACATION...
This Summer, there are going to be many top clubs looking for coaches --Hell, if he wants Serie A, there's a chance Inter, Milan, Juve & Napoli bench will be available in less than a month!
Why Roma, Mou?? You always went to THE BEST CLUB in the league (even "Totti-ham" was on astronomical rise when you took over..!)
Roma is not even FIFTH BEST in Serie A!!

Did you lose a drunken bet, José? :)
on the 6th May, 2021 at 12:48am

1. Why did Roma choose him??
It goes against their project model & their capabilities.
Roma's plan is: Bring in multiple young players with potential -->make as many of them into stars -->sell them to bring in another batch of youngsters ...All while continually GROW AS CLUB (raise quality of players, salaries, revenue...) & play modern attacking football to please fans.)

The project actually worked pretty well ...until Monchi drowned all the kittens in Rome.
on the 6th May, 2021 at 12:43am
John is right about the stadium and Paolo is right with his reservations. Sarri or Allegri would have been much better choices for the club. Maybe a season just focusing on Serie A will help but they need to get rid of plenty of useless baggage in Fazio, Santon, Jesus, Perez & Diawara. Dzeko is too old and the same could be said about Mhki & Pedro. They have a good solid core of younger players in Zaniolo, Spinazolla, Mancini, Veretout & Ibanez. They need a new keeper, center forward & defender!
on the 5th May, 2021 at 4:28pm
what is with clubs cant they see what the normal football fans see.Mourinho is only going there for the big payout.He dose'nt care about the clubs.he just to these clubs, ruins them gets sack and then get a big payout and leaves laughing all the way to the bank
on the 5th May, 2021 at 1:13pm
So Mourinho takes over at a big club that never wins anything in the PL and flops. Now he takes over a big club that never wins anything in Serie A and will reign supreme? I seriously doubt it. I think he's falling down the pecking order and these 'middle achiever' clubs are looking for a miracle man. I like him, but can't see it being a successful partnership, although he'll probably walk away with yet another (how many is it now? Five, six?) golden handshake.
on the 5th May, 2021 at 8:59am
Roma have decent players and Mourinho will improve them but what's the end goal? I don't see them in the top 4 next season. Will they give Jose the time to build a team? Will he be able to work with a limited budget? Will Dzeko stay? He's a level above the rest at Roma and at 35 could leave to win trophies.
on the 5th May, 2021 at 7:46am
Roma advanced the furthest in Europe but they were terribly disappointing vs Man United. However, this is a positive step as perhaps the owner understands that he needs to build a competitive squad and stop selling their top quality players and stacking a side with EPL rejects. They sold quality players over the years, Salah, Allison, Marquinhos, Pjanic, Strootman, Radja, etc. This needs to stop. Seria A cannot be a feeder league for Spain/ENG. Hopefully, this will get them a new stadia & WIN!
on the 5th May, 2021 at 3:10am
He's been going downhill for years, so I suppose Serie A is the next logical step. Italy takes all the has-been players from England nowadays, so why not managers too?

There might be an upturn for a while (Spurs WERE first), but expect the blaming of players (never himself) when things start to unravel, and then the probable implosion.

Hopefully I'm wrong, because he knows the game like few others.

But like Serie A itself, he seems like yesterday's man.

Still, a reasonable coup for Roma.
on the 4th May, 2021 at 10:43pm
1 year max. Once he realises he won't have money to spend he will hold on to be sacked and recieve yet another pay out...
on the 4th May, 2021 at 9:32pm
Don't play with 3 defenders unless you have a midfield like the 2010 Barcelona team.....
on the 4th May, 2021 at 9:02pm
La Roma, con una grandissimma squadra, ma con ZERO TITULI.
on the 4th May, 2021 at 9:02pm
I always believe any team with ambition must have a top class manager so this is a great sign of intent by Roma owners. The most important sentence in this article is ‘money must be spent this summer to renovate a sub par squad’. So along with a top manager the club really must sign strong players to improve a squad that simply isn’t good enough to compete with the top seriaA teams. Looking forward to seeing their transfer campaign!!
on the 4th May, 2021 at 8:50pm
best of luck to mourinho and roma, i have to be honest this seems like a disaster waiting to happen
on the 4th May, 2021 at 6:44pm
Come on, and build that new stadium Roma to enter the 21th century.
on the 4th May, 2021 at 6:13pm

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