Mourinho: ‘Roma players have weak mentality’

by | Jan 9, 2022 20:08

Jose Mourinho blamed a psychological collapse for Roma’s painful 4-3 loss to Juventus this evening.

The Giallorossi were in control of the match against the Bianconeri, taking a 1-0 lead quickly before extending that to a 3-1 lead after an hour. Then the Turin side scored three goals in seven minutes to turn the game on its head, giving them a 4-3 lead. A Wojciech Szczesny penalty save in the latter stages of the match ensured that Massimiliano Allegri’s side picked up all three points.

Speaking with DAZN after the game, Mourinho was evidently furious at the result.

“We were in total control for 70 minutes,” Mourinho said.

“The team played really well and had the mentality of taking control, we came out and started strong. We had this idea of the high press, of controlling the tempo and taking the initiative.

“It was so good for 70 minutes, then there was this psychological collapse. The 3-2 killed us, because Felix had an extraordinary game, which finished with a sprint against Cuadrado. I take him off and his replacement gets it all wrong.

“When we allowed them back in for 3-2, a team with a strong mentality like Juventus, a strong character. The fear set in. A psychological complex. It’s not a problem for me having 3-2, it’s a problem for them. For my team.

“At the end of the day, when you’re in the s**t, you get back on your feet and find your character. But there are people in this locker room who are a bit too nice, a bit too weak.

“I already told the players, if the game had ended at the 70th minute, it would’ve been an extraordinary performance. Unfortunately, it didn’t end then.”

Mourinho had thrown Ainsley Maitland-Niles straight into the starting XI just hours after completing the loan transfer from Arsenal, as Rick Karsdorp and Gianluca Mancini were suspended.

“I also have limitations on the bench too, not many options. Maitland-Niles just arrived, then we will certainly bring in another player next week. I am here to help the team.”

The Portuguese coach discussed the performance of Ghanian teenager Felix Afena-Gyan.

“Until a few months ago he was playing on the Primavera pitch. He’s a humble boy, a boy who wants to learn, from a tactical point of view he needs simple and objective things to do that.

“He did what he had to do, he created problems for Cuadrado and also did a good job defensively. Unfortunately he doesn’t have enough fuel for 90 minutes and when he came off we missed things that were too simple. He has talent, he just needs concentration.”

Mourinho discussed his impact on the squad and what’s needed to resolve Roma’s current issues.

“I never thought my personality was enough. I thought it could be a bit easier. For 70 minutes we played a game that is also a consequence of the talent we have, but in the main choices of the squad and the players who play there is often a lack of personality, even in managing emotions and in the game.

“I want to work here every day of these three years, not a day less. I need help from the club that really matches our potential. Now we’re signing two players on loan to help the team, one was Maitland-Niles and another midfielder who I think will arrive next week. A player with more physicality and personality, suitable to have some responsibility.

“This thing of playing in the comfort zone, of playing to be 6-7 is too easy for some personalities. We need to get out of this mentality. After Milan I told the guys that it’s them who has to move closer to me, it’s not me who has to become similar to their psychological profile. I don’t want to.”

Roma’s loss means that they now sit 7th in the Serie A table after 21 games, tied on points with Fiorentina but with a worse goal difference. The team sit nine points behind 4th place Atalanta, who have a game in hand.


  1. Brandon

    Half of them are who you brought in. Own it.

  2. Carmine

    It was a good game overall. He can’t be a sore loser every time they lose. He brought a lot of these players in like Brandon (the guy below or above me) is saying. He can’t just have a tantrum every time they lose.

  3. Jay Bangz

    @bradon and carmine, he said the truth. It’s a problem of mentality. U said half of them, how? Shomorodov, he’s not helping the team defensively neither was he good at pressing, so for that, are U going to blame him for such transfer? Tammy isn’t doing that bad, vina seems like the cheap option available then. A whole lot of Roma players ain’t good enough. When they showed right mentality all through the game against Atlanta Jose praised them, how come he isn’t allowed to express himself whenever the team loses.

  4. Lupo

    Juventus have the never die mentally and they keep on fighting till the end. Roma played well until they conceded the second goal they got scared and lost the match. Very sad.

  5. Sang

    I guess some people just don’t like Jose so always want to make him look like a worse coach. Let’s be fair to him. How many players did Pep and klopp brought in and also sold out and over how many transfer windows before having the team they have now ? But when it comes to Jose, he must perform even within a week of taking up.
    When he spoke about Man Utd players, he was fired, when he spoke about Spurs players attitude / mentality he was fired but where are these two teams today and how are their results. Hmmmm

  6. Ravanelli

    Throwing his players under the bus as usual

  7. Matthew

    Guys, honestly it’s on the players, not on the manager. It’s unacceptable to blow a 3-1 lead with 30 mins left. Roma lack a killer instinct and it starts with Pellegrini who is far too soft to be a captain. Roma will always be mediocre until they can find a way mentally to beat behemoths like Juve, Milan, Inter.

  8. Feroli

    he’s correct. he is the manager so the club have to support him and his vision.
    ‘’ After Milan I told the guys that it’s them who has to move closer to me, it’s not me who has to become similar to their psychological profile.” As long as he is in charge that is correct. Roma can’t collapse like that.

  9. ROMAntic

    What a game! (But only because both teams are bad!😝)
    (…They are bad MENTALLY, otherwise they have good players. –Def good enough NOT to lose against Bologna, Venecia, Milan‘s reserves, or draw Samp!)

    Does anyone believe Mou would be second with Milan’s team & all the injuries they had?
    What about fourth with Atalanta‘s players?
    Yes, he could possibly be first with Inter‘s roster, but that doesn’t explain why he came to Roma.

    Mou single handedly destroyed Shomurodov.
    Same goes for Villar, Diawara, Mayoral…
    He is always late with substitutions & doesn’t adjust to game properly.
    If his players are not mentally strong/ focused, unmotivated… it’s HIS FAULT! He’s the coach!

    I sincerely believe that Fonseca would’ve done a better, or at least a similar job as Jose, with a fraction of Mou’s salary.
    When Roma finishes the season 8th or 9th, WORSE than the previous year, Mourinho fans will finally shut up!

    Yes, players are at fault… …but Mouuuu is not helping & is actually making things worse!

  10. Ravanelli

    “If his players are not mentally strong/ focused, unmotivated… it’s HIS FAULT! He’s the coach!”


    Look how Conte transformed that Juve side in 2011.

    It’s his job to motivate the players, not grill them in the media after a loss like this.

  11. Nasimbek

    Spot on “Romantic”. I totally agree with you. Mourinho does his subs late and not by players real positions. On 56 th minute we could see that Abraham was tired and was loosing all the 50/50s. Instead he took of Gyan on 72nd minute and placed Shomurodov in wrong position as usual. Mourinho didn’t give a chance to his other forwards other than Abraham. Lately he panics a lot throws all his attackers after 80s minutes. His tactics are easy to read even before the game. Looking at his starting 11. I can tell who he will sub for whom and in what minutes.
    Honestly, there are many other managers who could do better with this Roma side than what Mourinho is doing. Roma under Mourinho didn’t win against top teams. Lost to Milan twice. Lost to Inter. Lost to Juventus. Lost to Lazio. Drew with Napoli. If Roma wants to finish in tip 4 ? They had to win at least half of the games against to top teams mentioned above. I think there is no Europe at all for Roma next season if Mourinho stays.

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