Jose Mourinho told his Roma players that he was “ashamed of them” during their 1-1 draw with Juventus.
Tammy Abraham ‘s second-half header rescued a point for the Giallorossi in Turin, but Juventus could’ve been out of sight by half-time thanks to an “awful” performance from Roma. A venomous free-kick from Dusan Vlahovic opened the scoring for Massimiliano Allegri ‘s side with just two minutes on the clock, and shortly after, Manuel Locatelli’s rip-roaring striker was ruled out by VAR.
Mourinho felt that his men were “unbelievably lucky” to head into the break with only one goal between the two teams, and he made his thoughts clear in the dressing room. “I told my players at half-time that I was ashamed of them. It wasn’t a tactical issue, it was their attitude. We can’t come here and play like this,” the former Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur gaffer revealed to DAZN post-match, via Football Italia
“I was telling [assistant coach] Salvatore [Foti] on the bench, pray that it’s only 1-0. Because losing 1-0 is a fantastic result after that first half performance and we were very fortunate. We did absolutely nothing, it was pure luck.
“It was a very different team in the second half, although unfortunately I didn’t have many options to bring off the bench, with [Nicolo] Zaniolo and [Georginio] Wijnaldum injured. Max [Allegri] with all the problems he has with injuries, was still able to make changes. If I analyse the second half, we deserved to win that 1-0, but the first half was awful.”
Mourinho, who made two half-time substitutions to help turn the tide, went on to admit: “It was tough for me to replace Gianluca Mancini, because the defenders were the victims of a generally horrible team performance. I am very happy with the second half and it’s an important point for us.
“It feels positive after a first half like that. I want to be as honest as possible with the people at home. I could’ve very easily come here and said I was a genius of a coach to change things at half-time.”
Juventus manager Allegri – who was missing new singings Angel Di Maria and Paul Pogba through injury as well as star man Federico Chiesa – was also left frustrated at the full-time whistle, but in contrast to Mourinho was more unhappy about the result. “It is a long season, we even risked losing it on another corner towards the end,” Allegri lamented.
“Juve played well on a technical level, but we must still improve. Roma were more defensive on their right in the second half and we should’ve put more crosses in with Weston McKennie on our left.
“I am happy with what the lads did, it was a good game, Roma are a great team and Jose is always good at keeping his side focused. It is unfortunate that Roma scored on the only corner they put to the back post, but that’s football. It was a strong performance.”
The Bianconeri boss heaped praise on his opposite number, too, adding: “He’s always smart and sharp in the way he reads games. If you don’t kill the game off, then you always leave the possibility of an equaliser.
“We were inevitably tired after such a strong first half. We should’ve passed it around and slow down the game, it’s something we need to learn. You cannot expect a team to dominate for 90 minutes.”