Eusebio Di Francesco insists “the one thing Roma must not feel against Barcelona is fear. We must be proud to face them with heads held high.”
The Giallorossi reached the Champions League quarter-finals for the first time in 10 years and will take on probably the favourites to win the tournament.
“This is a wonderful challenge and we are happy to be taking part in it,” Di Francesco told reporters ahead of a talk to university students.
“The one thing Roma must not feel against Barcelona is fear. Yes to great respect for a strong team, but not the fear of facing them. We must be proud to take them on with heads held high, great strength and dignity.
“We are a team who want to play the way we know how, albeit knowing the best side in the world is on the other end of the pitch.”
Roma’s season has been through some ups and downs, but they were revitalised by a 4-2 victory away to then-Serie A leaders Napoli.
“We did very well at the start, then had a period of real difficulty and that was clear for all to see. Now we are back to being a united team, strong, with balance and that can make the difference from here to the end of the season.
“First there is the game with Bologna, then we can think about Barcelona. That is an exciting event and both I and the players will relish the chance to take part.
“It’s important to get a good result at Camp Nou, otherwise it’ll be more difficult for us to host them in the second leg. I am convinced we’ll feel the force of our fans in Barcelona too. The enthusiasm around the side can only help us.
“I am pleased that so many fans are coming to Barcelona, because this is a rare occasion, especially in recent years. We must feel proud and the right level of pressure when facing Barcelona.”
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