Di Francesco refuses to quit after Roma’s 7-1 defeat

FLORENCE, ITALY - JANUARY 30: Eusebio Di Francesco manager of AS Roma looks on during the Coppa Italia match between ACF Fiorentina and AS Roma at Stadio Artemio Franchi on January 30, 2019 in Florence, Italy. (Photo by Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images)

AS Roma boss Eusebio Di Francesco will not hand in his resignation after their humiliating 7-1 defeat at Fiorentina in the Coppa Italia quarter-finals.

The Giallorossi conceded seven goals for the first time since 2014 against Bayern Munich and the sixth time in their history on Wednesday night at the Stadio Artemio Franchi.

21-year-old forward Federico Chiesa netted a hat-trick for the first time in his career as Fiorentina left Roma stunned with Sevilla loanee Luis Muriel also getting his name on the scoresheet.

Giovanni Simeone, son of Atletico Madrid manager Diego, got a brace and Marco Benassi added a goal of his own.

Serbian defender Aleksandar Kolarov had briefly got Roma back into the game at 2-1 in the first half, but it proved to be a futile effort as the visitors were left comprehensively outplayed.

“The only thing to do right now is apologise to our supporters and the fans who came in such numbers here tonight,” Di Francesco said on the club website.

“I struggle to find an explanation after a game that was played and managed so badly, from all points of view, and way below our usual standards and expectations.

“I apologise to them personally, for a shameful performance in so many ways.”

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The defeat at Fiorentina came just three days after Roma had squandered a three-goal lead to draw 3-3 at Atalanta in the Serie A.

It’s been a campaign with plenty of ups and downs for Roma, but Di Francesco refuses to throw in the towel despite the mounting pressure on his shoulders.

“Resignation? Let’s leave that sort of talk aside, the thought has never entered my mind,” he said.

“I think any sort of comment would be superfluous, whether it be technical or tactical. All I can do is apologise. It was a terrible performance from every point of view.”

After a terrible start to the season, Roma had looked like they were back on track in light of four successive victories.

But since last weekend, things have quickly gone downhill at the Italian capital.

“A few games back people thought the squad had bounced back, and instead we collapsed again too easily. You don’t need to talk about the tactical mistakes, which were there and obviously so,” added Di Francesco.

“The main thing is the mentality, that ability to keep battling away in games even when things are going wrong – to stay together when things are going badly, not having the wrong attitude during the game. Because you lose and you win together. This is what hurts most right after this game.”

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