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Jose Mourinho Tells Roma Players to “Be a Clown” and Dive More

Jose Mourinho
(Photo by Giuseppe Maffia/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Jose Mourinho Tells Roma Players to “Be a Clown” and Dive More

AS Roma manager Jose Mourinho has told his players that they need to dive more to get more penalties after not being awarded one in their 1-0 loss to Atalanta this past Sunday.

Down a goal in the second half, Roma’s Nicolo Zaniolo was taken down in the box by Atalanta’s Caleb Okoli without getting a touch on the ball, but to the surprise of Mourinho, no penalty was given.

After the missed penalty call by referee Daniele Chiffi was ignored, Mourinho took matters into his own hands by storming onto the field screaming at the referee before being shown a red card for dissent.

When asked about the incident post-match, Mourinho hinted that it could have been a different result had the penalty been given.

There was a very clear penalty,” Mourinho said, according to an ESPN report. “I asked the referee afterwards why, and asked him to be clear with me that it was because Zaniolo did not go down.

Mourinho had some words of advice for his team so that they will get the penalty calls that they may deserve.

So therefore I have to change my advice to my players, I have to tell them don’t try to stay on your feet, don’t play the ball, be a clown the way many who dive like they’re in a swimming pool do in this league, because that is evidently how you get penalties,” the 59-year-old said.

This is not necessarily the advice that you would expect considering the history of players diving in an attempt to get a call in their favor, but after all Mourinho is the “Special One” and clearly has his unique methods.

After the incident, Atalanta held on to its lead which was given to them by a 35th-minute strike from Giorgio Scalvini — the team’s only shot on target in the whole match.

While a penalty may have saved a point for Roma, they only have themselves to blame for the loss. The team had numerous one-on-one chances against the Atalanta goalkeeper but could not find the back of the net.

Following its second loss in the last three league matches, Roma sits in sixth place in the Serie A table with 13 points through seven matches. The red card will likely see Mourinho miss out on Roma’s next match with seventh place Inter Milan.

For Atalanta, the win has them sitting second in the league only trailing Napoli on goal difference, with a match against Fiorentina awaiting the team after the international break.

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