Roma come out of the International Break dropping points away to Bologna despite keeping their unbeaten away run going. Eric Pular gave Bologna the lead after an Injury to Belgian Superstar Radja Nainggolan. Before Edin Dzeko’s Second half Header Saves Roma earning a point in a disappointing 1-1 result as Roma see Inter and Lazio close the gab on 3rd. The Biggest concern ending up being not the Result but the injury to Nainggolan that leaves Roma in devastation with the Champions league quarterfinal against Barca coming this week.
Five talking points Roma vs bologna
The Injury to Radja Nainggolan
Roma’s Belgium Superstar picked up a thigh injury in the opening 20 minutes of the match yesterday. It came at a big cost not only did Roma concede within two minutes of him being subbed off but he is now very much in doubt to play against Barcelona on Wednesday who host Roma in the first leg of the champions league quarterfinals at the Camp Nou. Radja Nainggolan is arguably the best player in Italian football he’s aggressive he has great range he’s intelligent he’s a great leader he has all the intangibles to be an absolute Difference Maker on the pitch and he would have been a nightmare for Barcelona to have to deal with . His injury not only affected the performance in the game but will largely affect their chances of pulling off an upset against Barcelona in the Champions League on Wednesday night. Radja Nainggolan is Romans most dangerous player and with him in the squad he could have frustrated Barcelona both offensively and defensively his aggressive ability something they would have a hard time dealing with as I’ve said. Him out of the team for that first game is going to be very costly away goals is something that are going to be really important for Roma and his absence will be very costly we just have to hope you can be back for the second leg at the Stadio Olimpico because if he is out for both games Roma may not stand a chance of advancing. Roma still have Perotti,Under and Dzeko but without Radja things will be difficult.
Struggled to adapt to adversity
When Roma lost Radja Nainggolan to injury early in the game they were in complete control and we’re dominating the game quite easily. Prior to the injury bologna didn’t even have a shot at the Roma goal. Without Nainggolan they struggled to find an identity especially in their Midfield. Bologna went on to score near minutes after he was taken out of the game. I did agree with the substitution having Gerson come on to replace him was the right call and Gerson has performed well this season but it was extremely hard to replace what he was bringing to the Midfield. Roma although they tried reiterate his impact in the Midfield it didn’t work and they had struggled to deal with it. Roma had to wait until very late to even get a point in this game. They will have to learn how to do this better because momentum obviously was going to change Radja Nainggolan came off but Roma’s inability to stay in control at least to the extent they were the cost them. There are other issues throughout the game but a lot of it came down to what Radja brings to the team and the fact that Roma couldn’t deal with his absence. Fair play to Gerson and others for trying to play that role and maybe it had to do with a game plan or lack of changes by the coach but in a lot of ways this is what cost them.
I had hoped that we wouldn’t have to revisit this because of how much this has been an issue for much of the season. However missed opportunities and the lack of a Cutting Edge in front of goal was it big problem in this game. I love Kevin Strootman I’m glad he’s part of this club and I was quite harsh on him yesterday but he knows he cost the team. If Kevin Strootman finishes the open goal chance he had we wouldn’t even be talking about this because Roma would have scored and have gotten three points. And then we saw Patrik Schick Miss chance after chance despite being in good position to score quite often he was unable to find the back of the net. Once he gets his confidence back and start scoring he will be good for this club but last night it wasn’t great for him. I don’t mean to pick on those two in particular because multiple players lacked the necessary finishing on the go they did some good things going forward but they didn’t do enough to win the game but then again it wouldn’t be discussed if Kevin Strootman had put his chance away. it forced Di Francesco to use Dzeko who he probably wanted to rest. Roma must address this going forward missed chances is something they cant have against barca
Federico di Francesco vs Eusebio Di Francesco
There was a special match up to last night’s game between Roma’s manager Eusebio Di Francesco and bologna Striker Federico De Francesco. The father-son matchup proved to be crucial as Federico supplied the assist and proved to be an important player for bologna in their point gained against one of the top teams in Italian football. Federico was a standout star and the looked dangerous during a lot of moments he also looked equally strong against LAZIO a when Bologna took a point of them as well. While Eusebio Di Francesco made some errors or potentially made some when he didn’t change the formation after Radja went down it’s could of helped his team name of better because without him there they don’t have that identity in the Central Midfield so a change of formation could have done a better job but we live and we learn. However he made a really important decision near the end of the game when he decided to bring on Dzeko who ultimately scored the equalizing goal so it was a fairly even match up between the two but Federico left the game a lot happier than his father.
The battle for third opens up
Roma have had the third position for several weeks as they still appear to be the favorite among Lazio and Inter to finish in that position. Roma continued and continued to create separation as it looked like it was all but over for Inter and Lazio. But the drop points here from Roma and yesterday’s wins for Inter Milan and Lazio close the gap on 3rd. Now just three points separate the three teams fighting for this spot. With Inter Milan having a game in hand. This will put pressure on Roma to get back into winning form to get important results they must pick up as many points as they possibly can before they get into the tough matches. Despite this Roma still will finish third in my opinion and it comes down to one thing. The level of difficulty in the league when you look at the important tough games that all three of these teams will face. Roma have the easiest Road to pick up the most points out of all three teams. Roma tough games consist of the Roman Derby against the Lazio in a few weeks time then League leaders and defending Champions Juventus at home at the Stadio Olimpico. Out of those remaining tough games Roma probably only lose one of them. Inter Milan have to face Lazio,Juventus and AC Milan in the derby all three of those games could end up in losses. While Lazio play Roma Inter Milan and Juventus. Among all of the teams fighting for the final automatic Champions League spot Roma have the best chance given their schedule but pressure is definitely on them to get results if a rebound and are able to play in our capabilities they should still get third but after this result has it gotten a whole lot closer.