Fonseca: ‘I decide how Roma play’

Paulo Fonseca refuses to confirm if Edin Dzeko will start tomorrow, as Roma prepare to break down an Udinese side that ‘defends very deep.’

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“Pau Lopez will play tomorrow, but Marash Kumbulla had a problem in training and I don’t know if he’ll be available. Bryan Cristante can be an option in defence,” said the coach in his press conference.

Naturally, the questions were about whether Dzeko or Borja Mayoral will start upfront, with the Bosnian only making one substitute appearance since the row that saw him stripped of the captaincy.

“Dzeko is in good shape, while Borja is also training well. You will see my choice tomorrow. I make the decisions and I don’t let myself get pressured or influenced.

“I don’t want to say anything else about this, my answer will always be the same. I think Pedro is ready, but Stephan El Shaarawy is not, as he was out for a long time and isn’t physically ready to play now.”

When asked if Roma need two forwards to break down a defensive outfit like Udinese, Fonseca again imposed his authority.

“I decide how the team should play. If I believe at a certain point that the team should play with two strikers, then we’ll do it, but my decision is only mine, it is not influenced by what people say or write.

“Udinese have the fifth best defensive record in Serie A and they are very difficult to break down, because they defend so deep.

“They’ve had some great results over the last four rounds, are organised and dangerous on the counter-attack. We have to focus on preparing well and getting the win.”

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