Serie A race becoming difficult for Roma, concedes Nainggolan

Radja Nainggolan admits Roma's title hopes are looking slim after they went down 1-0 at leaders Juventus, who now hold a seven-point lead.

Luciano Spalletti's second-placed side were beaten by Gonzalo Higuain's superb early goal at Juventus Stadium as the reigning champions equalled a Serie A record 25 consecutive home league wins.

With a healthy advantage approaching the halfway stage of the season, Juve look well placed to clinch a sixth straight Scudetto, a fact grudgingly conceded by Nainggolan.

"It's certainly a defeat that hurts considering the performances, as we are not a weaker squad than Juventus and we didn't play worse than them," he told Sky Sport Italia.

"A single incident made the difference. We had some chances on corners, but the ball didn't want to go in. I think we can be satisfied with the way we played, as it's never easy at the Juventus Stadium.

"I'll be honest, seven points is a big gap now, as it means we'd need Juve to lose three games. We have to keep believing, but it's becoming difficult.

"If we play like this, then anything is possible, because I felt a draw would've been a fair result this evening."

Nainggolan was also critical of match official Daniele Orsato for his attitude towards the players.

"I try to stay calm, but he won't even let you speak," Nainggolan said. "It's natural that is going to irritate you.

"I was booked, [Juve's Miralem] Pjanic wasn't for doing the same thing, but if you ask him about it he just brushes you off.

"I could've said much worse things than I actually did. I understand it's a difficult job, but it might help if he listened to what the players have to say."

Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access

Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1

*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription

Join now for unlimited access

Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1