De Rossi: Roma before Napoli & Juve

Daniele De Rossi admits Roma come before Napoli and Juventus in the race for Serie A supremacy but believes his side could have drawn with the Bianconeri.

Roma lost 1-0 to Juve in their Serie A showdown before Christmas, with former Lupi defender Medhi Benatia scoring the winner against his old club.

However, the midfielder told Sky Sport Italia: “Juventus have very good players, but we played our game.

“We did less well in the first half but better in the second. It could’ve been a draw, and it wouldn’t have been an absurd or stolen result.

“Benatia forceful or Roma’s defenders giving up? It’s a bit of a stretch because Benatia was then the one who passed the ball to Schick…

“We didn’t take advantage of our chances, but there’s no use talking about mentality.

“Winning trophies? We have a long way to get there. Winning is a word that shouldn’t be just thrown about.

“I was taught that by a Coach who I respect a lot, Antonio Conte. You can’t base the ambitions of a team on a single game, especially when play against a very good team that we’d like to match.

“Di Francesco? His impact can be easily seen. We’re not predictable and we’re solid defensively.

“What’s he added? I could simply talk about our point tally. We had a great Coach last season and we had an amazing campaign, and looking back, we could’ve picked up more points midway through.

“Dzeko’s drought? He’s still a champion. He helps the team in an incredible way. He’s one of the best in the world and he’s having a great season.

“Totti? I liked him more as a player because he helped me win games, but he’s setting into his new role well because he has an excellent relationship with Monchi.

“Napoli? I’ve been saying for two years that Napoli are the worthiest team to win the Scudetto, but Juventus must be the favourites.

“Then come Napoli and us behind them. Nothing’s been decided yet, so we must stay calm after winning two games in a row.”