UEFA Champions League


Coach Eusebio Di Francesco was pleased to get his first Champions League win under his belt, as Roma clinched a hard-fought 2-1 win over Qarabag on Wednesday. Kostas Manolas and Edin Dzeko scored the crucial goals for the Giallorossi, as they secured a first away win in the competition for almost seven years. Afterwards Di Francesco admitted that the performance could have been better - but stressed the value of getting three points on the board.

"You can’t be disappointed when you win," he said. "We should have managed the two-goal lead better – we could have been more decisive and passed the ball better, but let’s not forget that Roma hadn’t won an away game in the Champions League for a long time and we showed we had what it takes to get three vital points. It wasn’t an easy place to come and they only had one chance to equalise right at the death. There’s a reason why Qarabag are in the Champions League group stages. We had the game right where we wanted it and we alone made life difficult for ourselves."

You looked to approach the game in the right way – but was your mentality wrong?

"That needs to be built from within. We’ve got four points from two games and it’s never easy to win in the Champions League. We’ve done that today. We could have won differently, but let’s look to the future. We will analyse the game from a technical and tactical perspective."

Did Gregoire Defrel have a muscle problem?

"It’s a shame that we don’t have many options on the flanks. Unfortunately, there’s always a risk that players can get injured, with all the travelling and the workload. The travel for this game wasn’t ideal, but I hope the players can recharge their batteries for the AC Milan game on Sunday."

(Photo LaPresse)