Mourinho: ‘It was a horrible first half for Roma’


Jose Mourinho was critical of Roma’s first half performance against Servette in the Europa League: “A horrible first half, I was in a great position to watch the game from the stands.” The Giallorossi took an early lead through Romelu Lukaku in the first half before a second-half blitz saw Andrea Belotti score a brace and Lorenzo Pellegrini put the result beyond doubt. Speaking with Sky Sport about the performance, Mourinho picked apart the opening ’45 but explained why the second-half saw a better display from his players:

“Horrible first half, I was in a great position to watch the game from the stands. I didn’t like the first half. We never pressed, there was very little movement and I didn’t like it. In the second half much we were more aggressive, and played with much more movement with and without the ball and therefore I liked it more.”

“Lukaku and Belotti? In the first half I didn’t like anything and in the second I liked their partnership. Obviously by playing with them two and without Dybala we lack creativity. But they are two physical players. If our wingbacks get the ball into the area we have a better chance of scoring because they are more physical. But it’s different when you play with Dybala up front.”

“Pellegrini? Unfortunately he is a player with enormous potential but he has this injury history and periodically has problems. I haven’t spoken to him or the medical staff yet, but from where I was sitting it seemed to me that it was something muscular.”

“Our midfield is pivotal for us and we haven’t still been able to play the way I had intended them to play before the injuries took place. Renato Sanches is very important because he gives us rhythm. Same thing with Paredes who has become crucial for us.”

“Bove must improve in short decisions and he is doing so and I am happy with his evolution. Cristante was the most in-form midfielder and we had to move him to the defense because of the injuries. Pellegrini is a creative force for us plays on and off, and Aouar has struggled to find his place with us.”

“We need more time to work things out but we don’t have enough time because we need all the points we can get.”


Serie A obsessive.