Tuesday March 8 2011
Lucescu: 'Roma are unprofessional'

Shakhtar manager Mircea Lucescu blasted Roma as “unprofessional, even though I told Darijo Srna off for making fun of the Italians.”

The Ukrainians emerged 3-0 winners in Donetsk, 6-2 on aggregate, after an ill-tempered game in which Philippe Mexes was sent off.

Daniele De Rossi deserved to go as well when he was caught on camera elbowing Srna in the face, then Srna was the recipient of some crunching tackles from Marco Borriello and Simone Perrotta.

“The Roma players were tense and too rough,” said Lucescu. “Srna was wrong and I told him off for making fun of the Italians after our goal. I got angry at half-time and told him if he did that again, he'd be replaced.

“Having said that, Roma's reaction was unprofessional.”

Shakhtar also won 3-2 at the Olimpico, so the Giallorossi had very few chances of qualifying.

“I knew the team would play good football, as we did during the group phase. I knew Roma's strength and we got an important result, especially as they started very well here.

“After the goal we gained in enthusiasm and they got irritable, so Mexes was sent off. Obviously with the extra man we dominated and scored another two.”

Lucescu is familiar with Serie A, having worked as a Coach at Pisa, Brescia, Reggiana and Inter.

“It's difficult to say what the difference was between the sides, but perhaps Roma did not take us very seriously ahead of the first leg. They conceded a goal that a big club simply cannot give away.

“I look at Italian teams in Europe and I am astounded when I see clubs signing 32-year-olds. It's true they are responsible and experienced, but younger players have a very different type of enthusiasm and fitness.

“It's harder work dealing with young players, but much more satisfying when it works out.”

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