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By ESPN Staff

Montella to focus on Roma psychology

Roma's new coach Vincenzo Montella has revealed he will focus on the psychological rather than technical and tactical status of the team.

• Montella takes Roma reigns

The Giallorossi announced on Monday that they had appointed former striker Montella to replace Claudio Ranieri, who resigned following Sunday's 4-3 defeat at Genoa.

The outcome marked Roma's third consecutive league defeat and left the club in eighth place, nine points behind fourth-placed Lazio.

"I think the team's main problem is above all a mental block,'' said Montella, who was unveiled to the media on Wednesday. "The players are sensitive and they are carrying inside them this big weight.

"They need to free themselves from this burden and this is the first step we need to take so that they can play at their true potential.''

Under Ranieri, Roma finished second to Jose Mourinho's all-conquering Inter Milan last season in Serie A and made a solid start this term.

They remain alive in the Coppa Italia and the Champions League, but they have suffered a dip in form off late and their last win dates back to January 22 when they hammered Cagliari 3-0 at the Stadio Olimpico.

Their poor run since then has ensured the Giallorossi face an uphill struggle to finish in the top four and qualify for next season's Champions League.

"I have spoken to Ranieri,'' Montella said. He has given me some advice and I respect him as coach. I have accepted this role with enthusiasm and I have the great fortune to coach Roma and to train great players.

"This is not a good time but I am counting on the players' will to bounce back. I will talk to some of them. But we are all professional and all the players have to accept my team selections with calmness and professionalism.''

Montella, who at 36 has become the youngest coach in Serie A this season, does not think his lack of experience will be a disadvantage.

"This was not my idea but I have accepted this role with calmness,'' he said. My aim is to do well until the end of the season, when my contract expires. I will bring out my best to help the team but the future does not interest me. I'm just concentrating on the task at hand.''

Roma travel to Bologna on Wednesday before hosting Parma this weekend. They will then travel to Ukraine next week for their Champions League last-16 second leg against Shakhtar Donetsk, needing to overturn a 3-2 deficit from the home leg to progress.


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