Thursday January 26 2017
Juan Jesus: ‘Roma aiming for treble’

Juan Jesus declares Roma “believe in ourselves” and are aiming for “the Scudetto, Coppa Italia and Europa League”.

The Giallorossi are just one point off the top of Serie A, and face Cesena in the Coppa Italia Semi-Final next week.

“We’re a team with great quality and big ambitions and we have to prove it,” Juan Jesus told ESPN.

“Out of the last nine games, we’ve won eight. These results have made a positive difference to our group.

“We now believe in ourselves and we’re aiming for all our objectives: the Scudetto, Coppa Italia and the Europa League.

“There are still plenty of games to play in Serie A. Juventus haven’t given anything away so far, Napoli are behind us and [Stefano] Pioli has changed Inter’s mentality to get them back to the top.”

The Brazilian defender joined the Lupi from Inter in the summer, on loan with an obligation to buy.

“There were several factors. The club needed the money because of Financial Fair Play, and I was the only one who had transfer offers at that point in time.

“It was time for me to change teams, I’ve always respected Inter and I still have huge affection for them. I had to think about myself and my family though, I wanted to make things better.

“How long will I stay in Europe? I came here when I was very young, 20-years-old. I still have another six years in Europe, when I’m about 32 I’m going to go back to Brazil.”

Understandably, ESPN also asked about Roma captain Francesco Totti, who is still playing despite turning 40 last year.

“Totti is a very calm person and also a playful lad,” Juan Jesus said.

“He’s an idol and people may think that he shouldn’t complain but he’s very humble. He always helps the fans, the children and he helps in the dressing room too. I can only speak well of him.

“He knows his own qualities and everyone knows that he’s technically a very good player. For every player there comes a point where your body isn’t the same anymore, but Totti is training even more and even harder in training and he supports the group.

“Although he hasn’t always played with us, he helps us and that’s the most important thing.

“There was a game against Sampdoria where we were losing and he came on and changed everything. That’s the impact he has.

“He might not be able to do it for 90 minutes anymore, but in an hour he can decide a game.

“We’re trying to do our maximum for him so that he can retire with a trophy and finish his career in the best possible way.

“He’s very important for us, and I don’t think he’ll leave day-to-day football. He really likes being here.”

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