I would say it has become another strange week for AS Roma fans given Jose Mourinho’s continued behaviour in the dug out – but it is no longer strange, it is rarely unexpected, but it is guaranteed to make headlines.
Sunday’s clash on home soil with Monza did end in a 1-0 victory for the i Giallorossi, but it needed a very late effort from Stephen El Shaarawy in the 90th minute to deliver all three points to them, and that was despite the visitors to the Stadio Olimpico being down to ten men in the 41st minute of the first half.
Roma did edge the clash, but you cannot say they dominated as Monza dug in perfectly with reduced numbers, and would have ended the clash feeling they were robbed of a point as they tested the goalkeeper exactly the same amount of times as the hosts did.
Rather predictably, with the game not going so well, Mourinho found himself again sent from his managerial position as he was over enthusiastic after the winning goal, and in stoppage time made ‘crying’ gestures to the opposition bench, and despite acting like a three year old again, he was suitably unapologetic – feeling he had been wronged.
“I don’t know why I got the red card, I only made a gesture to the bench, not a single word. We made a lot of mistakes and we suffered. It was a game with a low technical level, but a highly emotional one.”
A few days later, again on home soil, fans saw non of the normal and usual theatrics as Mourinho saw his side take a 2-0 victory over Slavia Prague in the Europa League Group G clash following a first minute goal from Edoardo Bove, and then 17 minutes in, Romelu Lukaku grabbed their second, to register his 14th consecutive goal in 14 Europa League matches.
Shaarawy provided both assists on the night, but Lukaku takes the headlines as no player has a longer streak in any European competition, with his own record spanning over nine years, with three clubs – Everton, Inter Milan and now Roma.
It means he has now definitely pushed the legend that is Cristiano Ronaldo into second place in this particular achievement table, as he only scored in eleven Champions League games in a row between June 2017 and April 2018.
Fans will undoubtedly continue to argue the merits of both achievements, given the time taken, game opportunity, quality of side played for and relative merits of the difficulties between the two.
Either way, it is worth highlighting and Lukaku will no doubt be pleased that now goes on his personal achievement list as he continues to get himself back to his best after more recent club experiences.