Roma coach Enrique explains axing De Rossi for Atalanta thrashing

AS Roma coach Luis Enrique stood by his decision to drop Daniele de Rossi for their heavy defeat to Atalanta.

AS Roma coach Luis Enrique stood by his decision to drop Daniele de Rossi for their heavy defeat to Atalanta.

The midfielder was left in the stands despite no physical problems, so it was reported he had turned up a few minutes late for this morning’s tactical meeting and was therefore penalised.

“I don’t talk about what happens in the locker room. Daniele did not seem prepared and if I don’t see a player looking prepared then I don’t send him on to the field,” said Enrique.

“I explained myself, right? I am certain that today any other player would not have made the difference.

“I am working in the medium to long term and trying to build a squad. This is not a revolution. I am building a team and that requires responsibilities that for me are non-negotiable.

“I may not have much experience, but I spent over 15 years in locker rooms of top clubs like Barcelona and Real Madrid, so I know how to handle players. If we are to become a team, then certain choices have to be made.

“There isn’t much to salvage from this match. I think we just weren’t there in the first half, suffering a great deal on their counter-attacks. The second half was similar. It’s very difficult like this."

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