Smalling: ‘Mourinho perfect man for Roma’

Chris Smalling feels Jose Mourinho is ‘the perfect man’ to bring silverware to Roma and take them to the next level. ‘He is a born winner.’

It was a huge surprise when the Giallorossi announced the Special One as their new coach, replacing Paulo Fonseca, and represents a complete transformation of their approach.

Smalling already worked with Mou at Manchester United in 2018 and assures any talk of clashes between them were blown entirely out of proportion.

“Ultimately, if the manager wasn’t speaking about you and didn’t want you to play and push, that is when you need to worry because he has stopped caring about you, he doesn’t want you involved and he doesn’t want you to play,” Smalling told BBC Sport.

“He is a born winner. He likes to push everyone to the limits. That is what he has done throughout his career and it has reaped results.

“We have won trophies together. He made me captain in one of those finals – the 2017 EFL Cup final – as well, so having the chance to play under someone who you know is good, has been so successful and is so determined to win trophies at all costs is a positive.”

Roma have not won any silverware since the Coppa Italia in 2008, taking the Serie A title three times in the 1940s, 1980s and 2001.

“I know how big a deal it would be to bring a trophy of some sort to the club. Jose’s history shows the club has picked the perfect man to do that.”

Roma reached the Europa League semi-finals, losing to Manchester United, but finished seventh in Serie A and will therefore participate in the new Conference League this season.

“There is a good feeling around the club. All the foundations are there. It is just a case of bringing it all together now.”