Roma coach Enrique defends benching Totti, Lamela

AS Roma coach Luis Enrique defended his selection after their thrashing by Juventus. Francesco Totti and Erik Lamela were surprisingly on the bench at the Juventus Stadium.

AS Roma coach Luis Enrique defended his selection after their thrashing by Juventus.

Francesco Totti and Erik Lamela were surprisingly on the bench at the Juventus Stadium.

Enrique said: “I did not see it as a risk. Don’t forget Totti was playing in the Coppa Italia game here and we lost 3-0. It’s too easy to talk about decisions afterwards. Juventus have great quality and physicality, so I thought it was best to adopt a more physical approach and reserve Totti for the next game.

“We must already look ahead to Wednesday with Fiorentina and then Napoli. Every time a defeat like this happens, of course we are worried.

“It was a game that I thought required more stamina and strength, so I believed this was the right line-up for the occasion. After those first eight minutes, it made no difference who was on the pitch. We had two trequartisti, Fabio Borini and Miralem Pjanic.

“I have played a few games in my career and know intensity is crucial. It’s true we are struggling to find that intensity and tonight Juve were more intense. I don’t think we are four goals different to Juve, but tonight that was the case."

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