Spalletti not interested in Europa League favourites tag

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Roma head coach Luciano Spalletti has warned his players against becoming distracted by being named among the favourites to win the Europa League.

The Serie A title-chasers dispatched Villarreal in the first leg of their last-32 tie last week in ruthless fashion, claiming a 4-0 win that has put them on the brink of reaching the next round.

A number of bookmakers have named Roma as one of the clear candidates to win the tournament, with many placing them behind only Jose Mourinho's Manchester United.

Spalletti, however, is not interested in predictions for the latter stages and wants his side to deliver the same level of performance in the second leg at the Stadio Olimpico on Thursday.

"I don't know what we'll find ahead of us in this competition," he told a news conference. "What I do know is that we're not thinking about anything other than Villarreal. 

"We want to give our fans something to celebrate, like we did last Thursday. It was very nice to see from the bus and I want to point out the welcome our fans received while wearing their colours in another city.

"We just have to win as many matches as possible. This is a game where we have to go out and set the tempo straight away. That has to become a constant with us.

"When you analyse matches in a competition like this, you do it over two games. The end of the first game is only a break.

"We don't want to scrape a 0-0; we want to impose our game on anyone who is in our path. The desire to do that must be constant.

"If we don't press the opposition like we did in the first leg, I'll be disappointed - first of all in myself, but also in the players. But I really don't know where we'll end up."

Spalletti also confirmed that Edin Dzeko - scorer of a hat-trick in the first leg - and Mohamed Salah would be rested for the match, with Roma facing a difficult trip to San Siro to face Inter in Serie A just three days later.