Mourinho takes six-goal humbling on the chin after historic defeat

Jose Mourinho and Lorenzo Pellegrini of Roma shake hands, September 2021

Jose Mourinho took full responsibility for Roma’s humiliating 6-1 defeat to Bodo/Glimt in the Europa Conference League on Thursday night, but pointed at the ‘limitations’ in his squad.

Roma had a 100 per cent record in the competition ahead of the Group C clash, so the former Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham boss decided to ring the changes – a move that backfired spectacularly on an artificial pitch in Norway.

The Serie A giants fell behind to an early Erik Botheim goal before Patrick Berg’s superb strike doubled the hosts’ advantage.

Carles Perez pulled a goal back for Roma, but Botheim completed his brace to put the Norwegian minnows in the driving seat just after half-time.

Ola Solbakken netted a late double and Amahl Pellegrino also got on the scoresheet to pile yet more misery on sorry Roma.

It was the first time ever that a Mourinho side had conceded six goals in a single match.

Speaking to Sky Italia after the match, Mourinho said: “I decided to play with this line-up, so the responsibility is mine.

“I did it with good intentions, to give an opportunity to those who work hard and to rotate the squad on a synthetic pitch in cold weather. I decided to rest many players.

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“We lost against a team that showed more quality on the night. It’s that simple.

“If I could always play with the same XI, then I would. It’s risky, because we have a huge gap in quality between the two groups of players.

“I knew the limits of this squad, it is not new to me. But I still expected a better response.

“As I said, it’s my choice to play them, so my responsibility.”

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Mourinho hopes to silence doubters

Mourinho now hopes the embarrassing scoreline silences those who have been questioning his team selections this term.

“Every defeat does damage. I spoke to the players and was honest. I was honest with them, I cannot be honest with you,’ Mourinho added.

“I’ve never disguised the fact we were a squad with real limitations. We have 13 players who represent one team, the others are on a different level.

“At least the positive thing from now on is that nobody will ask me why I always use the same players.”

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