Score: A.S Roma 4 Sampdoria 0 FT
-Stadio Olimpico, Rome
Following Roma’s 1-0 victory against Udinese On Sunday Night going within one point of the top of the Table Roma would look to keep their momentum going. In a midweek fixture in the Round of 16 of the Coppa Itaila against Sampdoria. The start of Italy’s domestic competition a very important match for Roma after leaving last year’s competition in disappointment after losing to La Spesia a team in Italy’s 2nd division it would be chance for Roma to win something once again. It would be there 2nd match against Sampdoria this season after beating them in their first match up serie a season this season. Roma were the much better team on paper despite some changes Roma looked the better part from the start Sampdoria wouldn’t go down without a fight though. Roma’s Raja Nainggolan would hit a stunning strike to open the scoring late in the 1st half. Roma would go into the half with a lead it would only go on for their 2nd half goals from Edin Dzeko, Stephen El Shaarawy and another goal from Raja Nainggolan would see them cruise through Sampdoria easily who was much overmatched throughout the 90 minutes. Roma’s disappointment from last year is long forgotten as Roma Secured a place in the Quarterfinals where they will play Serie B side Cessna another match that should be easy work for them setting up a possible Derby Semi Final against Lazio they have a pretty easy path to the final I wouldn’t be surprised to see them get there. The result does a lot for team chemistry a fantastic performance exactly what they needed.
Blockbuster Transfer news coming through over the last few hours according to several sources Kosta Manolas is on the verge on a summer move to Inter Milan with a transfer fee around €42million as well as a high salary along with it he would join the Milan club on a pre-agreement once a fee is agreed but it is not yet a done deal but the move seems imminent. I wouldn’t look at him as a traitor in this situation but I am not happy about the situation. However nothing is official yet but it comes as bad news to the Romans. In other news this week Roma got some very good news this week Roma captain Alexandro Florenzi who suffered a Torn ACL tear in October is way ahead of schedule on his recover he is now able to train and is in very good shape a return this season is very likely he might be able to return as soon as February 7th at home against Fiorentina. Not a lot of other transfer news at the moment I will keep everyone updated as much as I can as the window progress. Also Earlier this week Roma’s Mouhammed Salah got a 0-0 draw in Egypt’s opening game of the African Cup with Salah playing 60 minutes in there draw with Mali. We hope Salah and Egypt the best of luck as the tournament progresses. Luciano Spalletti would go with a very similar team that played Sunday with a few key changes. The formation was the same as it has been the last few weeks they continued to go with a 3-4-2-1 which is basically the same as 3-6-1 but it’s easier to understand this way. The back three of the defensive line would be the same with one change Fazio would once again play the center back role Antoine Rudiger would return from suspension as the right back to replace Manolas in the starting lineup than finally Juan Jesus would get another start as the left back. In the Roman midfield three starters would remain the same, with one change on the left side replacing Emerson to make his Roman debut would be Mario Rui as just recently recovered from an ACL injury. Rui joined the Romans in the summer from Empoli on loan with a buy option Spalletti felt it was a good idea to give him a run out in the cup to see what he’s capable of did well in this game. The left center midfielder would be Leonardo Paredes who has been such a joy to see playing again he’s proven to be an excellent young player this season. Joining him in the center midfield on the right side would be Danielle De Rossi than on the opposite side of Rui would be once again would be the vereatile Brazilian Bruno Peres. Than in front of them the two attacking wingers on the left wing would be Stephen El Shaarawy after a slow start to the season has performed very well over the last few weeks. Deploying the right side as the Right Wing would be Raja Nainggolan Roma best player at the moment he has been in amazing form lately. Than at the top as the Striker would be Edin Dzeko Roma’s most lethal player this season despite coming off a dreadful performance Spalletti showed his faith in the striker giving him the chance to redeem himself. There would be a sight change at the Goalkeeper position Roma’s #1 Szcz?sny was given the rest as Roma’s Europa league keeper Allison was given the start I think it’s very likely that the Brazilian will continue to be the starter in goal during this competition. Along with the starting 11 Francesco Totti, Diego Perotti, Strootman and Emerson would be available on the bench.
A.S Roma after spending the last several games on the road they would return home for their opening game of the Coppa Itaila they would take on Sampdoria who had advanced thorough beating CAGLIARI and BASSANO VIRTUS on their way to the Round of 16 While Roma are the Number #2 seed they have been waiting as Sampdoria Progressed through. Roma had a lot of pressure on them prior to the game after the feeling of great disappointment in last year’s cup where Roma were defeated by a Serie B side in a Penalty shootout so there was a lot of pressure to avoid another cup defeat. Roma were heavily favored in this match and if they advanced they would have a very easy route to the final as Juventus, Napoli, AC Milan and Fiorentina were all on the other side of the bracket. After a lot of talk about the match it was finally here Serie A’s addition of Thursday Night Football was ready to begin. G. Calvarese blew his whistle as they kicked off In Rome in a do or die elimination game. From the opening kickoff Roma looked much better were playing very well from the start of the match in particular Roma was passing very well sort of similar to Barcelona passing a lot of short effective passing. Despite Roma for the most part being in control of the game Sampdoria got an early scoring chance Sampdoria Striker received a pass into the box getting a 1 on 1 with the keeper but the shoot hit the left post Sampdoria got a rebound and attempted follow up shot but Rudiger blocked it to end the attack. Sampdoria had a few more chances to score but Allison was in complete control in goal the defense was also making it quite difficult for them to get a decent chance on goal. Roma were dominating possession but hadn’t really created that really good chance yet but they were creating a lot of offence. Roma had a free kick from the corner of the box but it was a tough angle for Paredes. Roma created a fantastic chance minutes later Paredes crossed the ball into the box for Bruno Peres he would give a short pass into De Rossi who attempted a through ball but the defense tried to clear it out but it Paredes hit the ball perfectly from the clearance it hit the bar than Dzeko attempted to head it in off the rebound but their keeper caught it a world class chance for Roma it was nearly a goal. The romans were managing the game quite well they waited for their chance and created it. They would create yet another great chance Bruno on the wing gave it to De Rossi who then crossed it in to El Shaarawy from like 10 yards out hit the ball on the first touch forcing the keeper to use his body to save it another great display of teamwork in the creation of the attempt it surely would only be a matter of time before they break the deadlock. El Shaarawy would go on a break minutes later but again missed El Shaarawy was visibly frustrated not to score. Roma would continue to push on and then the moment nearly came three minutes later. In the 34th minute El Shaarawy near the top of the box rolled it to De Rossi, De Rossi than rolled it to Paredes the Paraguayan hit it with ease but Roma couldn’t break the deadlock. Raja would have a chance minutes later Roma were really pushing on it had all of a sudden become one sided. Than after several close goals the moment came in the 39th minute shortly before half time. El Shaarawy sent a through ball to Raja it hit off the defenders foot right where Raja Nainggolan was he hit a stunning volley from about 30 meters out smashed it in the back of the net to give Roma the 1-0 lead it would Raja Nainggolan’s 6th goal of the season this one may have been the very best he’s scored this season a freak goal from the Belgium international. Raja’s back heel pass to El Shaarawy would be the last chance of the 1st half it would be 1-0 after 45 minutes.
Roma displayed a great deal of quality in the first half there were dominating the game in practically every area Roma would continue their run of form early in the 2nd half it looked like they were going to avoid another disappointing cup defeat. Just two minutes into the 2nd half they would double their lead in the 47th minute Edin Dzeko would make us forgot about his poor performance from Sunday. On the break Stephen El Shaarawy and Dzeko were creating a dangerous counter attack El Shaarawy chipped the ball into the box where Dzeko was the and Bosnian glided past the defense while staying on sides Dzeko would put his smooth touch past the keeper putting the ball into the bottom right corner to make it 2-0 Roma early in the second half. It would be Edin Dzeko’s 19th goal of the season he continues to be one of the best players in all of Italy this season. The goal made us all forget about how poor he was last Sunday Dzeko was heavily criticized for missing out on several good scoring chances as well as missing a penalty sending the ball to the skies. He was brilliant all game showing that his hot start is no fluke showing he still is one of the best players in Europe this season. Dzeko nearly doubled it shortly after nearly heading the ball into the back of the net but it hit the post Rudiger shot off the rebound but misfired another great chance for Roma. Dzeko had another go later taking a shot from outside the penalty area but went a little to the left. Sampdoria would get a few chances again after the possession being so one-sided but Allison continued to performed well as he was protecting his clean sheet. Than in 60th minute it would get even worse for Sampdoria Dzeko from Roma’s half launched a long ball into El Shaarawy who was running down the pitch the ball had a lot of bounce EL Shaarawy was able to control it the best he could beating the defense he would tap the ball off the bounce hitting it right over the keeper to make it 3-0 Roma. A fantastic goal from the Italian it would be EL Shaarawy’s 6th goal of the season he is finally showing Roma what they paid for when he join roma permanently after spending time with Roma last year on loan he has been in really good form lately. Shortly after the goal Spalletti went to the bench taking out Dzeko getting applause from the crowd coming in for Dzeko would be Roma legend 40 year old Francesco Totti making his 771st appearance for the cub. Much like Sunday Totti made an imminent impact getting into two scoring opportunities to score. Spalletti also brought in Perotti in for El Shaarawy he was the man of the match for me he also got applause from the crowd both players were outstanding in the game tonight. Late on Emerson would come in for Rui a very good debut for Rui I think he did very well. Sampdoria had a few more chances late in the game but again Allison was determined to keep a clean sheet. Perotti took a beauty short after but it just went a little wide despite it being unsuccessful it was a great scoring chance. Perotti’s next chance would not fail him in the 90th minute Perotti hit a perfect cross from the corner of the box into Raja Nainggolan the Belgium International would hit it past the keeper with the header to put the final nail in the coffin. Raja really has been world class lately. It would be his 2nd of the game and his 7th goal of the season. After thee minutes of stoppages G. Calvarese would blew the whistle for full time.
With the win Roma advances to the Last 8 with an easy 4-0 win here at home. They will face Serie B side Cesena in the Quarterfinals it should be an easy win Roma have an easy road to the final they will play Inter or Lazio in the Semis if they advance as they should. It would be great to see a Derby in the Semis but we will see what happens. Roma will pick it up again on Sunday as they will host Cagliari on Match Day 21 In Serie A. Very good performance by Roma today one of the most dominate performances of the season with the momentum they have they will only improve going forward.
MAN OF THE MATCH: Raja Nainggolan
NEXT GAME: vs Cagliari January 20, 2017
BY THE NUMBERS
On Target: 13
Passing Accuracy: 84%
On Target: 2
Passing Accuracy: 83%