Score: A.S Roma 3 Juventus 1 FT
Following Roma’s big win against AC Milan at the San Siro Last weekend the Romans would continue their journey through Serie A as the season starts to wrap up In what would be their 36th Match of their Serie A campaign in Perhaps their biggest and most important match of their season as Juventus would come to town as Roma would look for Revenge as they lost in their first meeting of the season back in December. The dog fight between Roma and Napoli for the last Automatic champions league spot would only heat up as Napoli wouldn’t have a better chance to leapfrog Roma for the rest of the season. Napoli only trailing Roma by one point would do their part as they beat Torino basically forcing Roma into a must win situation. Juventus are the kings of Italy at the moment as they are on the cusp of the treble having made the Champions League final (against Real Madrid) as well as the Cup Final (Against Lazio) and can win the league with a win against Roma. Juventus were the heavy favorites have won a large portion of games against Roma over the last several years. Juventus would start in Juventus fashion as the Old Lady would open the scoring about 20 minutes in When Mario Lemina gave Juventus the early 1-0 lead. Than In a blink of an eye Roma Leveled with Danielle De Rossi scoring for his third game in a row to make it 1-1. Roma looked in control for most of the half despite outplaying Juventus the first half ended with a 1-1 score line. In the second half Roma began to pull away When Edin Dzeko’s replacement Stephan El Shaarawy scored to give Roma the 2-1 lead. Roma than followed that up with a goal from Raja Nainggolan not that long after to make it 3-1 Roma. The Giallorossi pulled off an improbable upset to Stop Juventus’s 16 game unbeaten run to prevent them from clinching the Serie A title as. Roma are now only 4 points back from Juventus
There wasn’t a ton of news this week but there have been some interesting developments regarding the possible future of some players as well as unreliable rumors. With former Roma director Walter Sabatini now in a director position at Inter it is possible that Luciano Spalletti could join him at the San Siro next season as Inter Milan have a ton of issues to sort out and need a man to lead them forward given he is probably going to leave it would be a good hire by their board. The Man likely to replace him is Sassuolo boss Eusebio Di Francesco according to reports an agreement has been struck for him to replace Spalletti the Former Roma player done very well at Sassuolo. Since taken over he has helped them gain promotion to SERIE A as well as guiding them to their first every European campaign largely by using young players. While they may be better options out there he has deep history with the club as playing a massive part of their champion winning midfield that helped Roma win the Scudetto in the 2000-2001 seasons. He is still under contract for a few more years however Roma are willing to pay his 3M payout to bring him back to Roma. Di Francesco is likely to bring with him Lorenzo Pellegrini and Gregorie Defrel both players have played a massive part in their success both of them are also quite young. It would be going with the cheaper options in the transfer market rather than going big with a massive signings brining in quality from Serie A’s smaller teams I almost prefer that than going big for one star. However a rather big star has ended up on Roma’s Radar Bayern Munich’s Jerome Boateng. The German international has been left out of a lot of games for the German Champions this season in result he is likely to be heading out of Germany and Roma may be the perfect place for him. With the talent they have already a guy the Boateng could be exactly what they need as a Potential replacement for Inter bound Manolas. I’m not sure how much he would cost but if Roma could pull it off it would be a massive deal epically because he is only 28- years old. Another Rumor that has been subjected this week is Danielle De Rossi to Chelsea as it has been reported that he could join Chelsea on a FREE CONRACT as he is yet to sign a new deal with the club if he really wants to go I’ll let him he’s been a loyal servant for 15 years he has shown his loyalty and love to the club so if he wants a new experience who are we to stop him. Surprisingly just this morning it has been reported that Roma are trying to dump GK Allison I honestly don’t agree with it I think they need to give him more of a chance. Than finally it has been announced that Totti’s farewell at the Stadio Olimpico has been already sold out as fans want to say good bye one last time to the Iconic Footballing legend. Luciano Spalletti went with the 4-2-3-1 but oddly despite the absence of Dzeko they kept the same formation. There would only be two changes to the squad for this; as usual in goal would be Serie A’s clean sheet leader Wojciech Szczesny as his second loan to Roma comes to an end. The back four would be nearly the same as against Milan. Antonio Rudiger would make his return to the side after missing out last week with a suspension he would be the Right-back. On the oppiste side as the left-back would be Emerson; than as the center backs as usual would be Fazio and Kosta Manolas. In front of the defense would be the defensive midfield duo of Leoandro Paredes and Danielle De Rossi as Strootman still is serving his suspension. Than Roma would have their three headed monster in the attacking midfield; Raja Nainggolan as the center mid, Mouhamed Salah on the right and filling in for Dzeko Stephen El Shaarawy would be on the left. Than finally as the lone striker Roma would go with Diego Perotti at the striker position without Dzeko and Strootman the game will be difficult but they have the capability to do well in this game.
After weeks and weeks are discussing it; the most important match of the season has arrived with only three games left the result means everything Its Roma Its Juventus Its Italy’s El Classico. Juventus going into this game has dipped in form in Serie A the last few weeks having three straight draws I believe as on their focus has been on the champions league as they have recently reached the final as they will face Defending Champions Real Madrid in Cardiff with all that’s going on as well as the Cup final this week they have dipped in Serie A form recently. This is massive game for both teams for Juventus it is a chance to be crowned champions of Serie A and starting step one of the treble. For Roma it is more about taken over second permanently which puts them in a must win situation being only one point ahead of Napoli who won their game already this week in their 5-0 thrashing of Torino. Napoli would stay in second unless Roma win, it’s also key because Roma’s last two games are significant easier so a win against Juventus here would almost surely guarantee second this season as the battle for the last Automatic champions league spot only continues to heat up this week between Napoli and Roma. Juventus going into this game wouldn’t field there main squad as they gave rest to some starts but it wasn’t a poor Juventus team it still was a very good team this decision was made due to the fact they have the Coppa Itaila Final on Wednesday. However Roma was also shorthanded with Edin Dzeko out with a thigh injury; which is a rather big loss given the fact that he is Serie A’s top scorer and has scored 37 goals for Roma this season. Stephen El Shaarawy would replace him in the starting 11 which could turn out to be a blessing in disguise as he adds the speed element to the team as he has the speed to rip through the old lady. In Roma’s first meeting against the Old Lady Juventus won in a 1-0 win an unfair result as Roma played better for most of the game. Roma would welcome Juventus to the Stadio Olimpico in this match as Roma prepare to defend their home a place where Roma almost unbeatable having won all but two games at home this season as the Giallorossi would look for a season split with Juventus for the second year in a row after winning at home against them last year. The biggest storyline going into this game is return of Miralem Pjanic in Rome. The Bosnian midfielder spent the previous 5 seasons with Roma before deciding to betray the fans to join Juventus he will be get abused today without a doubt loyalty means everything to Roma. A match between Italy’s bests would kick off under the lights 1st vs 2nd with the outcome meaning everything to the status of the season.
Roma and Juventus are two of the best offensively effective teams in Serie A it was always going to be an equal match up. Juventus had the control in possession but it was even no neither have that dominance early from the start it was clear that it would be about taking advantage of chances. The Romans would hit first as Stephan El Shaarawy took a shot off a corner but missed to the left. Juventus hit back several minutes later When Kwadwo Asamoah hit it from deep coming off a corner was nearly there but he was denied by the post. A game of this magnitude started off very well the back and forth play would only continue in this top team affair the amount of shots wasn’t the highest both teams did a great job setting up chances to score. The Man who broke Roma hearts in the first meeting Gonzalo Higuaín got his first chance of this game but his shot from deep went wide. Roma would hit right back yet again proving to be a back and forth battle. Leandro Paredes sent a cross in from a corner into Kosta Manolas but his shot was the center of the box missed wide. As nearly team seemed to be able to crack the code as Roma and Juventus are the two best defensive teams in Serie A this season. Juventus would respond again with a chance of their own and this time they would answer in resounding fashion as they would break the deadlock. In the 21st minute Mario Lemina took a ball from Higuaín near the six yard box and slotted it into the bottom corner to give the Old Lady the 1-0 lead as Juventus all of sudden are a football match away from the title. Gonzalo Higuaín nearly doubled it minutes later when he strokes it from deep but Szczęsny saved it in the bottom corner to give Roma hope. Than in the 25th minute Roma would give a Rapid response as they would get back in the game. Off a corner kick taken by Leonardo Paredes he would cross the ball into Manolas who would get his head to it but was saved by Buffon; De Rossi tried to put it in off the rebound from inches out but Buffon again made a miraculous one-handed save but De Rossi got another rebound this time smashing it to make it 1-1. It would be De Rossi 4th goal of the season and scoring for his 3rd game in a row the first time in his career he has done that. It must be said what a goalkeeping display from Buffon an amazing saves from the GOAT. After the equalizer a relentless back and forth attack began from both teams. After De Rossi missed from deep Szczesny came up big with several key saves as he denied Stefano Sturaro and Gonzalo Higuaín late in the first half. With not much time to go there were three really good chances at the end of the half. This time it was Buffon’s turn to make some key saves. First for Roma Raja Nainggolan connected with Salah the midfielder got his head to it but Buffon saved it from inside the box. Buffon would make a save once again when El Shaarawy went from deep trying to hit it from outside the box. Minutes later Juventus would make one final chance to end the half and what a chance it would be Juan Cuadrado would send a cross into the box for Mario Mandzukic; the strike would take a well take shot from the side of the box he would sent a curler at the goal but would miss slightly high. After the end of the first 45 minutes it would be a 1-1 score line in this important fixture thanks to goals from Lemina and De Rossi.
De Rossi levels it with a rapid response
There were still a lot up for grabs as there still is a lot of football left Roma should be very happy with their performance so far they are very much still in the game after conceding and having the ability to hit back right away was very impressive considering how hard it is to score against Juventus. It could still go either way Juventus could still finish off Roma and secure the title but on the other hand Roma could get much important win against the Old Lady. This is exactly what we should have expected at this stage both teams are top quality not surprised to see even scores. Without Dzeko Roma are still doing a good job against a nearly unbeatable side. Roma has had the advantage in many areas despite Juventus having controlled possession a very evenly matched game. Neither team would make any changes going into the second half as the game of the week got underway as play would resume. Much like the first half there wasn’t a lot of shots early in the second half it was a lot of ball control trying to set up the right shot rather than shooting Willie nilly despite the lack of shots it still was intense. Than finally the first chance of the second half came through for the man that came in to Replace Dzeko in the starting 11. In the 56th minute while on the break Roma’s Raja Nainggolan sent the ball into Stephan El Shaarawy the Italian would get it from just outside the box and he would cut inside to the edge of the box before striking it the ball would wiping it across the grass into the bottom corner to give Roma the 2-1 lead scoring an absolute wonder goal an insane about of spin on the ball. El Shaarawy exploded with excitement as he celebrated with his teammates. It would be Stephan El Shaarawy’s 10th goal of the season it is clear he has found a home in Rome. Juventus tried to respound several minutes later when Juan Cuadrado whipped in a cross for Mario Mandzukic but the striker’s header was blocked and cleared by the Roma defense. It was great scoring chance for Juve one that would come back to haunt them as Roma would catch Juventus sleeping once again and this time it would be by the player all Juventus fans hate. In the 65th Mohamed Salah sent a through ball into Raja Nainggolan, it’s all ways a Belgium. Raja would than take the ball from middle of the box and smash it into the top right corner to make it 3-1 to Roma. Raja Nainggolan exploded in celebration as he ran over to the Juventus fans and celebrated in front of them getting revenge on all the things they have said about him over the years. Raja Nainggolan is having a career year as he scores his 15th goal of the season a lot of props also need to go to Mouhamed Salah who provided a pitch perfect pass getting his 14th assists in all competitions. It started to look unlikely that Juventus would secure the title on the day as they have been outclassed by Roma. After brining on Dani Alves prior to the goal Juventus went to their bench again. Paulo Dybala would replace Stefano Sturaro; Roma also went to their bench as they brought on Clement Griener for Diego Perotti. Late in the game with about a little over 20 minutes left Dybala make his impact within minutes of coming on. Mario Mandzukic sends in a cross to the argentine; Dybala would get his head to it but it was slight off target. Dybala tried again almost right after but his shot from deep was blocked by the Roman defense. Both teams went to their bench once again Juventus brought on Claudio Marchisio for Juan Cuadrado and Roma brought on Juan Jesus for Raja Nainggolan. Juventus continued to try and push but the Roman defense stood firm as Pjanic,Higuain and Lemina all had shots blocked by the defense. Pjanic had a nightmare of a return to Roma as fans booed him through the game as well as not doing much on the pitch didn’t contribute very much to the normally free flowing attack he had a big off game. Than with 5 minutes to go Juventus had to chance to get one back when Leonardo Bonucci’s headed came close from a Mandzukic cross but the header went a little wide. Than in stoppage time Roma made their final sub of the game as Legend Francesco Totti came on for Mouhamed Salah for the last few minutes. The game was already done despite Gonzalo Higuaín’s best efforts with a late strike it would end 3-1 to Roma. The Giallorossi would deny Juventus of the title as they make an important stride towards the champion’s league.
El Shaarawy rips through the defense to give Roma the lead
With this win Roma split games with Juventus for the second year running this result all but insures automatic Champions League football as it now looks unlikely they they will have to qualify. With their last two remaining games against Chevio Verona and Genoa Roma should find it quite easy to pick up all six points as they have got over the hump beating AC Milan and Juventus really the only thing that stood in their way from beating out Napoli for 2nd. Roma are now only 4 points behind the leaders with makes the Scudetto mathematically possible. It’s very unlikely to happen but it’s still possible Juventus let themselves down in this game as they didn’t take the game seriously enough. Juventus would responded to the wakeup call in the Coppa Itaila final against Lazio a few days later as they would win it once again beating Lazio 2-0. The man of the match for me today was Stephen El Shaarawy staring in the place of Dzeko he gave Roma explosive speed making the Roma attack fast pace scoring a great goal and gave Lichtsteiner so many problems trying to cover him. The win takes Roma to 81 points topping their last season total they look only one key signing away from overtaking Juventus
Juventus Hater Raja Nainggolan putting The Nail in the Coffin
MAN OF THE MATCH: Stephen El Shaarawy
Next Match: vs Juventus Saturday, May 20th, 2017
BY THE NUMBERS
On Target: 7
Passing Accuracy: 84%
On Target: 5
Passing Accuracy: 86%
TOP OF THE TABLE
1. Juventus 26-3-5 85Pts
2. A.S Roma 26-3-7 81Pts
3. Napoli 24-8-4 80Pts
4. S.S Lazio 21-7-7 70Pts
5. Atalanta 19-8-8 66Pts
BOTTOM OF TABLE:
16. Genoa 8-9-16 33Pts
17. Empoli 9-8-19 32Pts
18. Crotone 8-7-21 31Pts
19. Palermo 4-8-21 20Pts (Relegated)
20. Pescara 2-8-23 14Pts (Relegated)