Fonseca speaks of honour after final European match with Roma

Paulo Fonseca said he has been honoured to be Roma’s head coach after overseeing his final European match with the club.

Roma won the second leg of their Europa League semi-final against Manchester United 3-2 – and the scoreline could have been bigger. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to overturn the aggregate deficit and United progressed to the final.

Still, Roma could leave with their heads held high and Fonseca completed his record of never losing a European match at home with the club.

Here’s how Fonseca reacted to the game.

On whether Roma could have reached the final

“I thought it was still possible to get to the final, even if we were facing a side like Manchester United. Today, and in the first 45 minutes of the first leg, I think we showed that was possible. But we got the second half wrong in Manchester and from that point it was always going to be difficult to score four goals against a team like United.”

On how Ebrima Darboe is developing

“When Chris Smalling got injured today, I thought it was a chance for him to play. I have to say that I had some thoughts about maybe having him start the game too. But he came on and did well, he looked to me like a player with a lot of experience and a lot of confidence.”

On the experience of coaching Roma

“To have been the coach of Roma was a great honour. It was a great pleasure to be part of Italian football. I have learned a lot. We always need to look at the positives and there have been a lot in my career. It’s been a tough experience but a rewarding one.”

On whether he has heard from Mourinho

“Yes. I know him well. He’s acted very respectfully with me.”

On what his own next job might be

“Honestly, right now I do not know. I really like Italian football and Italy, but it all depends on the opportunity. We will see.”

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