Score: Roma 3 Austria Wein 3 FT
Stadio Olimpico, Rome
Following back to back wins against Inter Milan and Napoli In Serie A Roma takes a brief Break from League play in their midweek fixture in Match Day 3 of the Europa League Groupe E against shared group leaders Austria Wien. Coming off a convincing 4-0 victory against Astra they would face off against their biggest threat in their group. It would be a wild game in Rome finishing off as 6 goals draw in a 3-3 result. Despite the Draw Roma at many times looked like better side but the Austrian Giants showed some real quality in their own right the 3-3 draw seemed like a fair result. The scoring took over very early in this game in just the 16th minute to my surprised it would be Austria Wein that would strike 1st Raphael Holzhauser scoring to give the visitors the brief lead. It would only last about three minutes as Stephen El Shaarawy would even the score with a beautiful strike only to double it with another beauty 15 minutes later giving Roma the lead going into the half. In the second have Roma would score again with Alexandro Florenzi’s powerful shot giving the hosts a convincing 3-1 lead but it wasn’t over yet Austria Wien vaulted a big comeback scoring back to back goals to end in a 3-3 draw. It wasn’t an ideal result but it wasn’t a bad point either both teams played quite well throughout the game. They both will ultimately advance though the group but at the moment they are even at the top of Group E with 5Points. In Match day 4 they will face off again in Austria is clear that these two teams will advance though the other two teams aren’t good enough to take them out. The question now becomes who will win the group.
Much like in the past in this tournament some of Roma’s main players would come off the bench as I have described in previous weeks they need some of their key players rested because they are trying to take down Juventus this season (won the last 5 titles) to do that they need a fully rested squad in their Serie A matches this season. So that’s why players like Edin Dzeko and Muhammad Salah were left on the beech for this game. Roma boss Luciano Spalletti changed up his formation, I don’t know if he plans to use it going forward but after using 5-4-1 for a few mouths now they go back to their original 4-3-3 formation for this game it very well could have been due to injuries to Bruno Peres and Diago Perotti who will be kept out for two weeks. They kept the same back four as they used in last weekend’s victory over Napoli. Juan Jesus at left back seeming like the replacement for Bruno while he’s sidelined. There center backs would be as expected Fazio and Manolas than lining up as the right back would be Alexandro Florenzi. In the midfield, there would be several changes just one player of the midfield in this game started against Napoli over the weekend. Making up their midfield would be Radja Nainggolan as right midfielder than making his 1st start of his Roma career the Wonderkid Gerson would get the start at left midfield making only his 4th appearances this season since his joined in the summer. Than in the center midfield spot would be youngster Lenardo Paredes making another start. Than up front the striker force as I often refer to it as the three-headed monster. Stephen El Shaarawy would return to the staring lineup after coming off the bench for the last few games he would play the left-wing role. On the right, would be Juan Iturbe making a rare start than in the middle as the center striker would be Roma legend Francesco Totti making his 100th European appearance of his career. As for regulars Dzeko, Salah and Strootman would be listed as subs. Than in goal as the keeper would be the man they have been using in their European games this season New keeper Allison Becker making his 5th start this season. Despite some of the starters missing and injuries Roma still put out a strong team for this game.
The top two teams from Group E of the Europa League Italian Giants A.S Roma 1-1-0 and Austrian Giants Austria Wein 1-1-0. The two clubs would be even at the top of the Group with 4 points would face off in a big match in Rome. Roma and Austria Wein thus far had the same path in the group stage both teams beat Astra and Drew with Plzen. So it would be a battle for top of the group. Once again Roma were heavy favorites going in to this game. On the stat sheet told one story in the game told another. Roma were the much better team and were in control of the game but despite all that Austria Wein had a moment early on and they took their chance shocking the Romans. After receiving a beautiful cross from a team mate inside the box where Raphael Holzhauser kick a stunning shot past Allison for the goal who should have been in a better position to save it. Austria Wein would take the 1-0 lead 16 minutes in. It wouldn’t last for long in fact Austria Wien would only lead for 3 minutes in the entire game. Minutes later the Giallorossi equalized On Stephen El Shaarawy’s wonder strike. The 19-Year-old youngster Gerson delivered a ball in from half field into El Shaarawy who tapped a perfect ball right over the keeper to complete a fabulous finish to make it 1-1 in the 19th minute. It was a fantastic service from the 19-year-old making his impact right away in his 1st start It would be his 1st assist of the season as well as El Shaarawy’s 3nd goal of the season. Besides the minor slip up early in Roma seemed to be in control of the game. Allison was commanding well very in front of goal just looked the part of becoming potentially a fantastic keeper in the future. However, a little after the goal Austria Wein’s keeper would pick up an injury and have to be taken off. Action would than resume the Romans were playing great together and after several great attacks Roma would strike yet again. El Shaarawy would double up on goals as he would take advantage of yet another chance. Roma legend Francesco Totti would send a great ball in from a long cross deep into the box where El Shaarawy hit another great shot past the keeper giving Roma the 2-1. TOtti getting an assist in his 100th career European game. After play resumed both teams exchanged several good scoring opportunity but after failing to score the 1st 45 minutes ended with Roma leading the 2-1.
A few things stuck out in my mind from the 1st half. One key thing I noticed is how good Allison Becker was playing he was showing that he is very capable of being a #1 keeper in this league. I don’t think he should be the main starter for Roma this season as Szczensey is the better Keeper but Allison as much improved since his 1st game for Roma. The advantage is Allison is much younger and will be a big part of the Future of A.S Roma while Szczensey has been their number one starter this season he is bit older and his future at As Roma is slightly unclear at the moment the Polish international is at Roma on 2nd year loan from Arsenal it is very possible that he will be back on a permanent basis but it is also possible that he will return to London. Regardless Allison is a keeper that will continue to improve and get better. So, it was nice to see him perform so well in this game it would a tale of two half’s but at this point of the game he was in great shape despite giving up a goal early. Another positive I noticed was the brilliance of Stephen El Shaarawy. After hearing the news earlier this week that Starting midfielder Diego Perotti would miss the next two weeks the Italian winger would have to step up and what did he do he scored two goals in the 1st half. It seems clear to me that he can carry the load for Roma in the meantime. Gerson also did very well in this game. The 2nd half would begin and it would be a similar story as the 1st . Both teams would exchange chances but Roma would be in clear advantage yet again. In the 69th Minute everything would change Roma went on an attack Francesco Totti near the corner of the box delivered a perfect ball Into Florenzi who blasted it in the back of the net to give Roma the 3-1 with Totti getting his 2nd assist of the game. It seemed it over with not a ton of time remaining it felt like it was a done deal with 20 minutes remining it was surely over. Unfortunately for Roma Austria Wein had other Ideas. Again, they were exchanging chances but as time went by it was getting closer and closer to the end and that’s when the comeback began. In the 84th Austria Wien would score and absolute beauty with several collections of passes a back-heel pass to Dominik Prokop who put it past Allison who again seemed like he could have saved it. It would be a bit unclear if his vison was blocked on the play. Roma still had a one goal lead they couldn’t possibly give up another goal with less than 10 minutes left could they? Austria Wein stroke again two minutes later scoring to draw even 3-3 after being down two. The Visually disappointed Roma gave a late push would it would end as a draw as Roma threw away a 2-goal lead a very disappointed finish at the Olimpico.
Despite the disappointing draw Roma and Austria Wien would still be equal at the top of Group E with 5 points each. It seems like the other two teams in this group have no chance they would be unlikely to advance through it seemed it will be the Italian and Austrian side that would be going through. Roma were very disappointed with the Result but they will have a chance to get Revenge as they play them again in the next Europa league match day. Roma will return to Serie A this weekend to take on Palermo after back to back wins against Inter Milan and Napoli. Disappointing Result but had some positives.
Man Of The Match: Stephen El Shaarawy
NEXT In Serie A: V.S Palermo October 23rd
NEXT In Europa: @ Austria Wein November 3rd
BY THE NUMBERS
On Target: 6
Passing Accuracy: 86%
On Target: 5
Passing Accuracy: 79%
1.Austria Wien (AUS) 1-2-0 5Pts
2.Rom (ITA) 1-2-0 5Pts
3. Astra (ROM) 1-0-2 3Pts
4. V.Plzen (CZE) 0-2-0 2Pts