Wojciech Szczesny: Roma players need to be men not boys

Il Tempo (Adriano Serafini) The pair of them tried to carry Roma on their own, spurring on their team-mates and stopping the team from collapsing during the most delicate points of the game. They raised the overall standard of the team, but it wasn’t enough to help them get anything from the match. Of Nainggolan and Szczesny, it was the Polish goalkeeper who was clearly the more bitter of the two during the post-match interviews.

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“The difference between Juventus and us isn’t in ability but in mentality. I’m sorry to say it, and I certainly don’t like saying it, but this team needs more men and less boys. We don’t have a winning mentality yet. At the end of the day, this was a finely balanced game.” With an enviable calmness and level-headedness, the Roma #1 continued to make his feelings plain, going back over the limitations that the team has now had for some time without any plausible explanation. “Juve are a physically strong team, with great players, but no one is unbeatable. We didn’t create enough chances. We’re a good team, but not a great one yet.”

Nainggolan preferred not to comment on his team-mate’s comments, but admitted that it isn’t an easy situation and how difficult it has become to bridge the gap that has opened up with Juventus. “We need to believe in ourselves and keep fighting, because the game showed that actually there isn’t a big difference. We aren’t a worse team than they are. But we have a mountain to climb now with the gap that’s opened up in the league.”

He tried to look for some positives as well. “We deserved a draw, that would perhaps have been the fairest result. So this defeats hurts even more, but it will spur us on to get results even quicker.” There was a final pat on the back for Gerson: “He’s a young guy and he’s showing promise,” Ninja added.

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