Fonseca: ‘Dzeko starts against Napoli’

Paulo Fonseca confirms Edin Dzeko will start for Roma against Napoli tomorrow, while he is hopeful Gianluca Mancini and Roger Ibanez can also play.

It kicks off on Sunday at 19.45 GMT, click here for the match preview.

“Dzeko is ready, he will play from the start,” assured the coach in his press conference.

“Mancini and Ibanez trained today, there’s a good chance we’ll see them on the pitch too. Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pedro don’t need too much rest, they’re as enthusiastic as children.”

It is more likely that Chris Smalling and Bryan Cristante will have difficulty recovering in time from their injuries, but Roma are on fine recent form and secured their place in the Europa League knockouts too.

However, when asked if they could be Scudetto contenders, Fonseca put a lid on those ambitions.

“It’s still early days and we have to wait quite a few more rounds before we make any evaluations, but I have no doubts that Juventus and Inter will fight to the end of the season for the title.

“Then there are other clubs who might get close to these two clubs, but it’s too early to say. We did not beat Juve or Milan, but we did play well against them. We want to play with courage tomorrow as well.

“Since the last time we played against Napoli, Roma have improved a great deal, there has been undeniable progress. We have a lot more faith in our capabilities, too.

“I watched all Napoli’s games, they are strong and courageous. I expect a difficult game, because even when they did lose this season, they didn’t really deserve to.”


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