AS Roma and Lazio must both put
internal problems behind them when the bitter rivals meet in
their second derby of the season on Sunday.
Roma, sixth in Serie A with 38 points, have promised that
coach Luis Enrique's decision to drop pivotal midfielder Daniele
De Rossi from last week's match at Atalanta for indiscipline is
water under the bridge.
Over at Lazio, who are fourth with 45 points, coach Edoardo
Reja has put aside differences with the club which prompted him
to announce his resignation 10 days ago - a decision that the
directors refused to accept.
Roma crashed 4-1 at Atalanta last week without De Rossi, who
was disciplined for turning up late for a team meeting.
De Rossi refused to give details but said there were no hard
"My coach said that things remain in the dressing-room and I
will follow this line.
"There is nothing to hide: I am part of a group in which we
are all treated equally. I have always spoken highly of Luis
Enrique and I will continue to do so. He is a good person and I
like that everyone is equal in his eyes.
"It was not positive, but what I want to say is that there
has been no quarrel. I was just a bit inattentive."
Reja said there were no lingering problems following last
week's episode before the Europa League match with Atletico
"I have an excellent relationship with the president apart
from some problems a few days ago," said Reja, whose side beat
Fiorentina 1-0 last weekend.
"For me, the matter is closed. Now we are thinking of Roma;
the derby is a game that does not listen to predictions. I hope
to have 11 lions on the field."
Lazio are level on points with third-placed Udinese, who
occupy the Champions League qualifying-round slot.
Leaders AC Milan (51 points) visit Palermo on Saturday while Juventus, who are one point behind and have a game
in hand, have a more straightforward game at home to Chievo.
Milan and Juve drew 1-1 last Saturday and the controversy
raged for several days after Sulley Muntari had a goal
disallowed even though his header was a metre over the line
before it was pulled away by Gianluigi Buffon.
"Muntari's goal not being seen by the linesman is a tragedy
for football," said Milan tops-corer Zlatan Ibrahimovic who was
completing a three-match ban.
"After the match, I was more aggrieved than angry. Everyone
could see it was a goal. Not giving it in that situation... you
can get an offside call wrong but not a goal like that."
Crisis club Inter Milan host Catania when
another defeat could spell the end for coach Claudio Ranieri.
Inter, down to seventh with 36 points, have lost their last
four Serie A matches without scoring and have taken only one
point from their last 18.
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