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Need to Know: Di Francesco's key pre-SPAL comments

On Friday afternoon coach Eusebio Di Francesco faced the media to preview the weekend trip to face SPAL.

Read what the boss had to say about Saturday's game, which gets underway at 15:00 CEST.

"SPAL are extremely well drilled and they give very little away. We must make sure we capitalise on our chances - and do so better than we normally do. It won't be easy, especially as it's the first game we're playing with hot weather. It's a very important match for lots of reasons and I hope we get it right."

"[Diego] Perotti is raring to go. I have to decide whether or not to play him from the start but he's definitely available for selection.

"The only player who won't be involved is [Aleksandar] Kolarov as he has a minor muscle complaint. Jonathan Silva or Luca Pellegrini - more likely the former - will come in at left-back. I want a left-footed player there.

"[Edin] Dzeko is really up for it at the moment but I'll speak to him tonight or tomorrow and decide whether to start him. If he doesn't, then [Patrik] Schick will lead the line. It's not easy to keep playing back-to-back games."

"It's quite clear that we've done something extraordinary but we mustn't stop here. I hope all this desire we're seeing continues. My mind is on Ferrara at the moment but afterwards we can focus on our fans and what they can give us. They should be a source of inspiration for us."

"We have five crunch matches to play and we can't afford to get any of them wrong so we must be fully focused tomorrow. We need to pick up as many points as possible.

"Lazio dug really deep to come away with a result from a tough ground [against Fiorentina]. Inter have done likewise and they're on the up. It's all set for an exciting finale to the Champions League race."

"Maxime always has a chance of playing: he's a Roma player and everyone needs to be ready to play.

"He's always in the thick of the action and anyone can make a mistake in possession. The goal we conceded [against Genoa] started with him but it wasn't a mistake as such, although he perhaps could have done better.

"Look at the balls we won, the aerial duels he won and that pass he gave [Alessandro] Florenzi - if we'd scored from that people would be saying Gonalons had a great game.

"He may not have done anything 'special' but people should appreciate what he does do. He's always there helping his team-mates and as a coach that's exactly what you want to see."
Source: As Roma
Friday April 20, 2018
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