On the eve of Parma vs. Atalanta, a match scheduled for 19:30 CEST at the Stadio Ennio Tardini, Coach Roberto D’Aversa had the following to say to Parma Calcio 1913’s official site.
Will any more players be available?
“Alberto Grassi hasn’t trained, with this also applying to Hernani. Roberto Inglese has been struggling, but we’ll see what the situation is like with him tomorrow. Grassi and Hernani will definitely not play.”
Two games remain before the season comes to an end, and Atalanta will be the visitors to the Tardini tomorrow: is it true that motivation for such games just comes naturally?
“Yes, I believe so. Tomorrow, we’ll need to have the desire to face of the best teams in the league. We’ll be playing a side that has the opportunity to progress in the Champions League. Over the past few years, Atalanta have made great strides forward, and I believe they’re a team that stands out as a model example. With their Youth Sector forming the basis, they’re doing great things and have managed to create something fantastic. In terms of their team, they have a squad which is strong from both a physical point of view and in terms of quality.”
Tomorrow will be your 150th game in the Parma dugout: what does this mean to you?
“It brings me great satisfaction on a personal level: after Nevio Scala, I’ve been in charge of Parma for the longest number of league matches, and this is a source of great pride. During my time at the Club, we’ve achieved some important results, although they obviously can’t be compared to what Nevio Scala did. The fact that I arrived when we were in the Lega Pro and now have the possibility of reaching 52 points in our second year back in Serie A, which has historically been the most difficult for newly promoted sides, fills me with pride. However, you shouldn’t think about what you’ve achieved but only focus on what you still need to do.”
Irrespective of the team they send out tomorrow, Atalanta have an excellent squad: where do the biggest dangers lie?
“The dangers lie in the strength of the group. Atalanta have scored the most goals in Serie A, picked up the most points during the second half of the season and, irrespective of whether they’re playing at home or away, have a system that doesn’t give you much of a chance to play. From a physical point of view, they can create problems for you. It’ll be important to have a positive mindset tomorrow, while the physical side of things will also be vital as we will expend a lot of energy. It won’t be an easy game, but none of our matches have been this season. It’s up to us to make life slightly difficult for them and achieve a result that seems unthinkable at the moment. This is the beauty of football: the final result doesn’t always correspond to the pre-match predictions that are made.”
(Photo Getty Images)