December 29, 2017 / 3:44 PM / 3 months ago

Roma to field "Schick plus 10 more" against Sassuolo

MILAN (Reuters) - AS Roma will field ‘Patrik Schick plus 10 other players’ in their next match, coach Eusebio Di Franscesco said on Friday as he backed the Czech striker following his key miss against Juventus.

Roma, who host Sassuolo on Saturday, were beaten 1-0 at Juventus in their last Serie A game but would have taken a point from Turin had Schick converted a golden chance in stoppage time.

The 21-year-old was sent galloping clear of the Juve defence but sent his shot straight at goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny.

“Schick will definitely start tomorrow,” Di Francesco said. “It will be Schick plus 10 others. It can happen that you miss a goal-scoring chance in the 94th minute in a game of that importance.

“It weighs heavily but he needs to have the strength to get over that. Right now, he’s the player I’m sticking closest to – he’s an asset to the club and a strong player.”

Schick has had a difficult time since moving to Roma from Sampdoria in the close season. He suffered an injury which kept him out of action for nearly two months and has failed to score in six league outings.

“He needs to improve and has a long way to go,” said Di Francesco. “We’ve worked a great deal on the psychological side of things to get over that error against Juventus as quickly as possible.”

Fourth-placed Roma have hit an indifferent patch with two wins, two draws and a defeat in their last five league outings.

Writing by Brian Homewood in Bern; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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