Fonseca ‘worried’ about international break

Paulo Fonseca admits he is concerned about the international break in relation to the COVID situation and warns Roma about Cluj.

The Portuguese tactician spoke at a press conference ahead of Thursday’s Europa League clash against the Romanian club.

“They are very strong team,” Fonseca said.

“They have a specific way of playing and they do it well. They are aggressive on the second balls and last season they were in the same group of Lazio. They qualified and Lazio didn’t. Cluj haven’t lost in 15 games.”

Chris Smalling will rest tomorrow while the Portuguese coach has yet to make a decision on Pedro.

“Smalling will not start, it’s a lot to do three games from the beginning.

“As for Pedro, I knew he could be a very important player for the team and I am not surprised by his performances.

“He is a unique professional. We will see tomorrow if he plays, it is true that he played almost every game but we have to manage him and [Henrikh] Mkhitaryan. I think he can play, let’s see if he will start.”

Borja Mayoral has yet to score his first goal with the Giallorossi.

“What I’m interested in, is getting Mayoral to play, there aren’t different teams for Serie A and Europa League.

“I think the most important thing is to make him play.

“For me, it’s about choosing the best players for every game. Obviously I’m attentive to the physical condition of the players and the proximity of the next game but the most important thing is to choose the best players for this game.”

Fonseca didn’t hide his concern for the upcoming international break.

“Here at Roma we are very strict, we do tests almost every day.

“I know national teams do the same but players go to different countries and continents. It’s a situation that worries me, we hope nothing happens.”

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