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For Mourinho, AS Roma have theoretically won the Europa League this season

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For Mourinho, AS Roma have theoretically won the Europa League this season

AS Roma manager Jose Mourinho claims his team have won the Europa League this season. The reason is, Roma are the only remaining team to start the Europa League from the group phase.

“If I didn’t have the ambition to win, it would be very easy for me to say now that we have won the Europa League. Because if the Europa League is for the team that starts this competition, then Roma win,” Mourinho told a news conference ahead of the semi-final leg. Europa League second against Bayer Leverkusen.

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It is known that three of the four teams that advanced to the semifinals of the 2022/2023 Europa League are teams that have dropped in caste from the 2022/2023 Champions League. They are what Mourinho called the “shark” of the Champions League.

Roma themselves started the Europa League this season joined in Group C and qualified for the preliminary round with status as runners-up under Real Betis.

“However, that’s just a theory, our goal is to win. I want to make clear my respect for Bayer Leverkusen as a team, but there is greater value to a team that was built to play in the Europa League and has played 14 games in the Europa League,” said Mourinho.

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“We had a tough group stage against Real Betis, then a play-off with Champions League team Real Sociedad, who have already qualified for next season’s Champions League, and a Feyenoord team who have won the title in Holland. So it was a tough journey for us,” he added.

Previously, in the first leg, Roma successfully defeated Bayer Leverkusen with a narrow score of 1-0. The only goal for the team nicknamed the Capital City Wolves was scored by Edoardo Bove in the 63rd minute.

Away to BayArena, Leverkusen headquarters, Thursday (18/5/2023) or early Friday morning WIB, Rome is not certain that it is safe to qualify for the final round. Jose Mourinho confirmed that Paulo Dybala, Stephan El Shaarawy and Chris Smalling could play against Bayer Leverkusen.

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“They can all play tomorrow. Everything. Only Karsdorp, Llorente and Darboe were unavailable. The problem is how long they can play, not because of the injury, but the level of fitness. In Smalling’s case he hasn’t played a minute in weeks, while Dybala rarely plays more than 30 minutes when he is not 100%,” said Mourinho.

“This is why we have to think about how long they can play, 20, 30, 40, 60 minutes and what is the best for the match puzzle,” said the coach nicknamed the Special One.

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For Mourinho, AS Roma have theoretically won the Europa League this season

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