Parma, 16 January 2021 – Today, Roberto D’Aversa held a press conference ahead of Parma’s 18th league fixture of the Serie A season against Sassuolo tomorrow. This is what the Crociati Coach had to say:


Out of the injured players, only Iacoponi has been able to train with the team a little bit. Up until yesterday, we didn’t think we’d be able to call him up. We’ll need to assess things right until the very end because we can’t afford to take more risks than is necessary. Despite the fact that we’ll have a lot of absentees, it mustn’t be an excuse for us. It’ll be a very difficult game due to the standard of the team we’ll be up against. Our approach needs to be positive, and we need to have the desire to go there and get a result.


“We’re experiencing enormous difficulties. Yesterday, for example, Gagliolo was looking to join the team in training but wasn’t able to. The problem we’re having is that we’re preparing for matches based on the characteristics of the players we have available, but then some of them are unable to play. This shouldn’t be an excuse; on the contrary, it’s an opportunity for all those who take to the pitch.


Despite the current situation, we need to think positively. I said to the lads that we matched a very strong Lazio side for an hour. In Reggio Emilia, we need to have a positive mindset and, despite the fact there are difficulties, we’re the first ones that need to believe we can get a positive result. It’s not a decisive game, but we need to go there and perform as if it were. There needs to be a desire to bring home a positive result at all costs.

 

What have I asked from the new players in the squad? This week, we started to work with a certain methodology involving new concepts. It’s only normal that we’ll need time. I’ve asked the lads to push the reset button and try to do what I think is required to get out of this situation and pick up results. New and old faces isn’t a topic at Parma Calcio. I’ve tried to make the lads understand that I’m watching them in the same way, irrespective of how long they’ve been a part of this team. The only way to show respect to these guys is to watch them during our training sessions and then choose a starting eleven afterwards.

 

“I believe that there was a positive aspect to the Lazio game. Sohm had a great chance, while Reina did really well to deny Cornelius, who, however, I believe would have scored if he’d been in a different state of mind. Four/five negative results can hit your confidence, and you need to work on all aspects during the week. The best medicine is three points. We don’t need negativity because if we start thinking in this way, we’ll struggle to get out of our current situation. If we think positively – and this doesn’t mean failing to comprehend that we’re second from last – we can do it.

 

“Roberto Inglese has experienced an unfortunate family situation and we’re all showing him our warmth at the present time. Considering what he’s going through, I hope that this gives the lads extra motivation as they look to pick up a result for him. He hasn’t been in optimal condition physically but made himself available against Lazio. This is a positive sign: it shows the lads are aware of the difficulties we’re experiencing. It’s vital to understand that we’re a team and all of us need to give more so we can get out of this situation.


“On the eve of a match, my thoughts aren’t on the transfer market. I’m currently only thinking about the fact we’re about to face a strong team that has improved in both attack and defence compared to last year. Sassuolo have a Coach that I’ve always held in high esteem and have made positive changes: in addition to keeping the ball, they’re now also happy to play in a more direct fashion too. They’ve been one of the best teams since the league resumed. The Club and Sporting Director know what is required, but today is not the day to address this.”