Luciano Spalletti praised the bravery and commitment of his players, as well as the performance of two-goal midfielder Matteo Brighi, after AS Roma won 3-1 at CFR Cluj 1907 to enhance their prospects of qualifying from Group A.
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Luciano Spalletti praised the bravery and commitment of his AS Roma players after they won 3-1 at CFR Cluj 1907 to move to the top of Group A for the first time. Matteo Brighi scored twice to enhance the Giallorossi's chances of making the last 16, and his own of securing a regular place in the team. CFR coach Maurizio Trombetta said poor defending cost his side, leaving them with just pride to play for on Matchday 6 – when Roma take on FC Girondins de Bordeaux with a top-two finish at stake.
Luciano Spalletti, Roma coach
We controlled the match and that's one of the reasons why we won. My players fought bravely, passed very well, were fully committed and earned a deserved victory. I have to admit that when we went 2-0 up our intention was to close the game out and prevent Cluj from attacking as that's one of their main strengths. We didn't meet that first objective as they scored, but we managed another too to achieve our goal. It was important the way the players kept things tight, especially when our opponents had the ball. In recent weeks Brighi has offered more to the team and I've very happy with how he's playing. It was good for him that he scored two goals as that's raised his confidence and increased his chances of being a regular starter.
If our forwards don't manage to score then the midfield players can do it, or even the defenders. It was also vital that we pressed quickly from the back. I go through things in detail in training but it's essential for the players to understand everything and apply the ideas on the pitch. Theoretically we have a chance to win the group. We won today and will do our best to get another three points at home next time out, when the crowd will be behind us. I try not to pick the same team or substitutes because my intention is to adapt our lineup according to who we play. I want to have a squad where as many players as possible are capable of making a difference.
Maurizio Trombetta, CFR Cluj coach
We played well. We made a good start and had a great opportunity to score at 0-0. The way we went 1-0 down could have had a psychological effect on my players but they continued to work hard. There was a collective mistake by our defence and goalkeeper Eduard Stancioiu for that goal, and it was not the only mistake he made. Even when it was 2-0 we had chances. It was important that the players reacted like that, especially as they've done it against a big team like Roma.