Five Fonseca quotes: Roma praised for belief and focus after strong end to 2020

Roma ended 2020 on a high note as they beat Cagliari 3-2 on Wednesday night.

The result – set in motion by an early goal from Jordan Veretout, before Edin Dzeko and Gianluca Mancini added to the scoresheet in the second half – ensures Roma go into the Christmas break in the top four.

Paulo Fonseca has guided Roma to third in the table, the highest they have been at Christmas since 2016.

As his troops prepare for a brief break, here’s how Fonseca reacted to the game.

On responding better to conceding an equaliser than against Atalanta

“We once again had to go through a moment that could have been a bit problematic. I think we have the ability to stay focused throughout even difficult periods.”

On why Bryan Cristante has been playing in defence

“I chose Bryan because of my confidence in him, I like how he plays in that position: it was important for us to have the ball and be able to build out from the back from him.”

On why Chris Smalling didn’t start

“We can’t forget that it was a really intense game in Atalanta, and I wanted to rotate a few players. Chris Smalling has only just come back and it is difficult for him to play too many games just now.”

On the upcoming transfer window

“Now we will start to think about the transfer window. We will have a lot of games ahead of us when we come back. It will be important to think about things carefully and choose wisely.”

On Roma proving their doubters wrong to end the year in third

“It’s a positive first half of the season, we finish 2020 in third. Perhaps a lot of people did not think that was possible, but the team has always believed in what it can do – even after tough moments.”

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