Lazio Coach Sarri Calls Derby vs Roma “One of the Most Important Matches in Europe”

Lazio coach Maurizio Sarri highlighted the importance of today’s Derby della Capitale against Roma.

Speaking to gathered reporters in a press conference (via LazioNews24) last night, the 62-year-old Italian coach first spoke about his emotions heading into this evening’s derby.

I believe that with a good performance we can get a result. We meet a strong team, it’s not a normal game, it’s one of the most important matches in Europe. 

It’s an honour to play it, I think when we were kids we all heard Lazio v Roma on the radio and dreamed of one day playing it. This is it, let’s play.

He touched on Lazio’s recent run of poor form, starting with the 2-0 loss to AC Milan earlier this month.

The Milan game left a few dregs after the first two games. Obviously something broke inside. But it’s normal to lose games and we have to react. 

The team is alive during the training sessions, but there is something that prevents us from expressing ourselves at 100 percent also at a technical level. We have to improve in everything, as I have always said this is a path. 

The players now think too much and are blocked. This is not playstation, this is real football. Sometimes the paths are difficult, we try to get there in as little time as possible.

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Sarri commented on the themes shown by the statistics this campaign.

Lazio in the league have been down five times and scored eight points, so there is also some merit. 

Lazio were conceding 7.2 goals on average last year, this year seven. The goal average is higher. Excessive criticism, we need to improve, but there is something good about it.

He discussed his mindset picking the starting 11 in tonight’s game and the situation surrounding Spanish midfielder Luis Alberto.

I don’t make my choices based on the choices of my opponents, I’m not a tactician. I’m someone who works with strategy on my team and I want to pursue it. We will try to play our football. 

Luis Alberto is suited to playing in my way of football, as is normal he has had some underwhelming games. I don’t think he was asked to defend in the past years, I see it as hard.

The former Napoli and Juventus forward spoke about the performance of the wingers so far this season.

In my opinion, the wingers must play closer to Immobile, they often come to meet him, they must move more without the ball and in spaces. 

In attacking the penalty area Pedro is better than Felipe Anderson but I have never trained a player as potentially strong as Felipe. 

He has to make a general growth because he could be a crack at international level.

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He discussed the pressure of this evening’s Derby della Capitale against Roma.

This is a match that intrigues me a lot, it would be great to make the fans happy. But journalists are wrong in thinking that the media pressure is the internal one. 

In San Giovannese Montevarchi I had the greatest pressure of my career. The internal pressure comes from internal feelings. 

However this match inside your stomach, something moves you, it’s not a normal game. A pleasure to play it, we hope to play it at 110% of our possibilities.

Finally, Sarri spoke about if today’s derby against the Giallorossi could be a turning point for the Biancocelesti.

I hope the derby is the turning point but past experiences don’t count. All teams have certain characteristics, so the evolutions of some teams are not replicable. 

There are thousands of aspects that affect a team and many are uncontrollable even for the coach. I hope the spark goes off tonight and not tomorrow because tomorrow could be late.

Roma have had a strong start to the season under coach Jose Mourinho, winning four of their five opening games.

Tags Biancocelesti Derby Della Capitale giallorossi Italy Lazio Lazio vs Roma Maurizio Sarri Roma Roma vs Lazio Rome Sarri Serie A Stadio Olimpico