Roma may have won 2-0 over Real Sociedad in their Europa League last-16 first leg but head coach Jose Mourinho refused to call it a good result.
Goals from Stephan Al Shaarawy and substitute Marash Kumbulla secured the home victory which gives the Giallorossi a significant advantage ahead of the return leg in San Sebastian.
Despite that, Mourinho was not satisfied, urging caution with a quarter-final spot at stake.
“This 2-0 is only good if we don’t lose by three in the second leg,” Mourinho told Sky Sport Italia. “I will never say it’s a good result after the first leg.”
Mourinho acknowledged Roma have a complicated schedule around the second leg on Thursday 16 March, with a Derby della Capitale against Lazio three days later.
“Now we have a dangerous week,” the Portuguese said. “After the return with Real Sociedad we play against Lazio, even if for me playing with them is like playing with Milan or Juve, but in this city it is not like that.”
Roma actually had only 40 per cent possession against Sociedad, yet generated three shots on target compared to the Spanish side’s one.
Despite not declaring it a good result, Mourinho said his side controlled the game and deserved the win.
“I liked the organisation, the effort and the empathy on the pitch,” Mourinho said.
“We all helped each other. It’s hard to play against teams who field a midfield diamond. We faced it against Empoli and RB Salzburg, but it’s difficult.
“We needed a strong mentality because when you don’t have the ball for a long time, mentality is crucial. We controlled the match despite having less possession.”
“It went to plan. All credit to the lads.”
José Mourinho after tonight’s victory!
https://t.co/Axg2KxHp40 #ASRoma #UEL #RomaRealSociedad pic.twitter.com/odoyjFJZZ3
— AS Roma English (@ASRomaEN) March 9, 2023
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