Wednesday, May 5, 2021
Jose Mourinhos Portuguese player has received great support from Paolo Fonseca, the current coach of Roma, who will be succeeded by the veteran coach at the helm of the Italian capital’s team.
On Tuesday, Roma announced that Fonseca would step down at the end of the current season, with Mourinho taking over as his successor.
This represents a quick return for Mourinho, who was sacked by English club Tottenham Hotspur on April 19, after 17 disappointing months in leading the London team.
Mourinho won two Serie A titles, the same in the Italian Cup, and won the European Champions League only once during his only previous experience in Italian football with the Inter team, which he trained between 2008 and 2010.
Fonseca expects his successor to do well during his time in Rome.
Fonseca spoke about Mourinho at a press conference held today, Wednesday, on the eve of the Roma match with Manchester United in the semi-final second leg of the European League, where he said, “He is a great coach, we all know that. I think he will do a great job.”
When asked whether the decision to step down at the end of the season was reciprocal, Fonseca replied: “Frankly, I think the time has come to follow different paths with Roma.”
“It is not one of the most difficult tests in my career,” Fonseca added. “I live this moment naturally. As a professional, I focus on my work until the last day.”
“For me, professionalism is a sacred value. I am here today as on the first day: enthusiastic. I want to do my best for Rome until the last day,” Fonseca said.
Fonseca led Roma to fifth place in the Italian league for the 2019/2020 season, but the team is currently in seventh place, 14 points behind the qualifying places for the Champions League next season.
Fonseca’s career with Roma is likely to end during the meeting between Roma and United on Thursday, in light of the Italian team’s loss 2/6 to its English counterpart in the first leg that took place between them last Thursday in England.
Despite this, Fonseca does not rule out his team’s achievement of a new miracle against Manchester United, such as the one achieved by Roma in 2018 when it compensated for its 4/4 loss to Barcelona in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final, after defeating the Catalan team 4-0 in the second leg in the Italian capital.
“It is not easy to beat Manchester United 4-0, but I have seen a lot of things in football. I believe in everything,” said the Roma coach.
Roma have never lost their first-leg matches during the knockout rounds in continental competitions (with the exception of the preliminary rounds) since their elimination against Real Madrid in the 16th round of the Champions League 2015/2016 season.