Sarri Suggests “Europa League Is Almost Impossible” Ahead of Lazio vs Marseille

By Apollo Heyes -

Lazio coach Maurizio Sarri touched on the difficulty of match fatigue ahead of tonight’s match against Olympique Marseille.

Speaking to gathered reporters in a press conference (via La Lazio Siamo Noi) yesterday, the 62-year-old Italian coach first discussed if he will rotate the squad a lot for tonight’s match.

With the current schedule, the Europa League is almost impossible. On Thursday night, not being able to play on Monday, it becomes difficult. 

We’ll see how the guys are, the problem is relative for this match because we played on Saturday, it will be more of a problem for the next game. 

The Lazio coach then touched on if he is concerned about Olympique Marseille forward Arkadiusz Milik.

I’m worried about Milik and all of Marseille, a team that has energy, technique, plays a difficult game to face. 

A great and challenging match, it’s important for us, with the new rules this match takes on great importance.

He discussed if star striker Ciro Immobile would be able to play three games in six days.

Ciro is one of those players who have such a high importance in the squad that it’s difficult to think of a pre-arranged plan. He is fundamental for our fate. 

We’ll see how the guy reacts from time to time, I think he’s doing quite well, but there are seven games between now and the next break. 

Right now it seems to me that he can move on, then we’ll see what happens going forward.

Sarri touched on the incredibly busy schedule that Lazio are currently going through.

This is a discourse that affects 7 teams, these 7 in total will be forced to play for 17 games with less than 72 hours of rest. It means an average of 2.5 days per team. 

It is a shame that we will have 6 and another team will have 0. I see that the League is very helpful towards me, it always responds to me, unlike what it does with others. We don’t think they’re bad or strategise against us, but we think there has been a lightness in the schedule. 

The difference of 4 to 2 can be accepted, 6 to 0 is difficult. I saw Dal Pino talking about the Premier League. 

If I were him, I would not enter into this discussion, I would remind him that in England the managers have brought in over €5 billion, in Italy less than a fifth. In the Premier League, with that money, they have allowed the teams to create rosters of a different level. 

With Chelsea, I used to change 10 players between the league and Europe, it seems to me that a comparison is not possible at this time for Serie A.

I would leave aside what happens in the Premier League, it is another planet, like comparing the NBA to Italian basketball, which is a great league but the NBA is another story. 

As far as the sports judge is concerned, I still have my threatening finger…. In Milan I said “you mustn’t take the p*ss out of me because I’m 60 years old…” and I was disqualified. 

Against Inter I saw hands on me, hands on a player on the ground, there is talk of a spit that I did not see and therefore I do not even take it into consideration. At this point I think my finger is extremely dangerous….

The Lazio coach spoke about if the loss to Bologna was an isolated case and his thoughts on defender Luiz Felipe.

We need to show consistency, not reaction. We reacted, took a good step forward, we were good in a delicate situation. But then we need consistency, we can’t do 20 games in a row like Inter, we had some incredible figures. 

We have a player like Milinkovic-Savic above 3 thousand meters of speed, it never happened to me to see one apart from Kanté. A match like that cannot be repeated 20 times in a row, but we have to maintain certain prerogatives. 

They did better defensively, we have to improve certain things, both Luiz and Acerbi, they are the ones who have played the most so far, they are asked to be more communicative. When one does not have a matter well in hand it becomes difficult to take command of the line.

We have tried to give consistency to these two because it is right to focus on the mechanisms, but we have other players ready. With a better communication we can turn the problem around.

He discussed if this controversy was surrounding him because he was the Lazio coach.

I don’t know, we were unlucky, it’s sad to think about something like this. In the Premier League the referees were inferior, our referees are handsome, muscular, gymnastic, they run, but the attitude is different. 

The relationship in the Premier League is more confidential, in England we don’t talk so much about the referee, here there are so many controversies, we are also to blame for not allowing the referee to express himself.

The 62-year-old Italian coach spoke about if he will re-deploy winger Mattia Zaccagni.

Zaccagni doesn’t need to be re-deployed, he played a part of the match on Saturday, he had a fever as soon as he came back, so he had a slowdown. 

He is doing well, he needs to find 100% of his condition. If I have to be honest, he played few minutes but he made a great entry against Inter. He helped with some earned fouls and in the defensive phase.

Finally, Sarri spoke about the difficulty of competing in the Europa League due to the rule change and the busy schedule.

This is a difficult event, before the groups were simple, now they are less so, the teams that made the groups easier have now ended up in the Conference. 

The competition is also more difficult because of what the regulations have become, it is an extremely complex event, more so than before. 

It creates enormous difficulties in the league, now we are in the game and we want to stay in the game, tomorrow’s game is an important one, tomorrow it can open up paths or it can make them extremely difficult.

Tags Biancocelesti Italy Lazio lazio vs olympique marseille Maurizio Sarri Olympique Marseille olympique marseille vs lazio Rome Sarri Serie A