Roma are set to take on Barcelona as they host Spanish Giants in the second leg of the Champions League quarter-finals. Roma are facing uphill battle already down 4-1 in this fixture. Largely to do with the two penalty claims that weren’t given and the two own goals in the first leg. It is mutually impossible to come back from but never say never. Roma will need a 3-0 win to make the semi-finals.
After Roma’s 2-0 loss at home to Fiorentina the Italians look to put that result behind them as they face and Incredibly difficult uphill battle against the soon-to-be Spanish League champions Barcelona. Coming into this match there’s good news and bad news. The good news is Roma will finally get Cengiz Under back from injury Roma’s young Turkish Talent will give them a massive boost as he has been one of the best players in Italian football since the start of 2018 having scored 6 goals in his last 8 games. Having him back could make a huge difference in this game he adds another dimension that Barcelona will be forced to deal with had he played during the first leg I think Roma would have been able to create more opportunities. With his pace and speed he is a matchup nightmare for any defense. Having him back will enhance Roma’s slim chances at a comeback. Unfortunately there is bad news as well as it’s looking more likely that Roma will be without Diego Perotti with the Argentine having lesions in his calf muscle putting him in major doubt for the match. Which will be a major blow his name does not jump off the page but he has been one of Roma’s best players this season when he is playing Roma seems to play well. Not to mention he was Roma’s best performer during the first leg at the Camp Nou his absence will dramatically affect the way the team play because what he brings to the team. However Roma will also see The Return of Radja Nainggolan to the Champions League after he returned to League action on Saturday. If the Belgian can play at his very best he will cause major problems for Barcelona and could be view as the Kingpin in Roma’s attack especially with his deep balls from the Midfield he could be a major threat in a lot of different ways. I see slight modification with the lineup from Eusebio Di Francesco I will go back to Roma’s regular starting defense as well as starting an Nainggolan, Strootman and Pellegrini in the Midfield. That seems to be the strongest Roma can put out. The Italians need three goals minimum. So because of that Roma needs to put out there most attacking minded players. In their attack I believe that Roma should start Dzeko under and El Shaarawy up front. Putting two players with Incredible pace with a clinical finisher Edin Dzeko in the middle will be there best way to take advantage of their opportunities. They’re finishing in front of goal needs to be as sharp as possible. The key player from Roma in this one I believe is Radja Nainggolan like I mentioned everything flows through him he can make an impact defensively and in the attack if he is on his game Roma could have a chance. It looks all but over on paper but some of Roma’s biggest leaders Federico Fazio and Radja Nainggolan both believe they can pull off the impossible and I think their belief is half the battle they believe they can win. Win or loss I belive we will see a strong Roma performance.
It is not just Roma who have injury issues despite Barcelona’s Advantage going into the second leg they could be without Sergio Busquets and ousmane Dembele. Barcelona’s a role in this match is very simple due to the own goals and the help they received in the first leg one goal seals it. Barcelona need to get Messi going because its something that did not happen in the previous game as the Roman defense completely shut him out. The great Leo Messi doesn’t have Manny off games so it will be incredibly difficult for Roma to do that again but his involvement is very crucial. Because if somehow he’s not at his best yet again it could allow Roma just enough to try and come back. So Barcelona’s main job is to avoid that. Scoring one goal an away goal seals it for Barcelona they’re already halfway to the semi-finals so if they just find the back of the net once it’s pretty much a done deal. If Barcelona is mistake-free throughout the game there’s no reason why they shouldn’t go through with the lead that they have already. The key player for Barcelona is Leo Messi if he can operate and be effective like we know he can he will be a danger with only one goal needed a single moment of Leo Messi magic certainly could be the difference. Barcelona must take this match seriously if they do their isn’t much hope for Roma.
Barcelona are in firm control a three-goal lead is always difficult to overcome especially in the Champions League. for Roma to go through it will take nothing short of a miracle however in the Champions League Miracles can happen. Just a year ago Barcelona erased a four-goal deficit to advance through the round of 16 Against PSG. In what was the largest comeback in champions league history. crazy things can happen in this competition Barcelona have such a great chance to qualify with their advantage no one is really giving a Roma a chance to overturn this however it is possible. If Roma are going to turn this around a few things need to happen. The Romans need to score as soon as humanly possible Roma need three goals the quicker they score the easier it will be to come back. Let’s be honest this is extremely difficult and in all likelihood they won’t be able to do this. However there’s no reason why Roma can’t pull it off they have the players to do it Roma need to be at their very best for this to happen but it’s not impossible. if Roma limit mistakes and play superb defense they have a chance I wouldn’t say it’s a great chance But it’s a chance none the less. But most importantly when the chances come for Roma they must take advantage they aren’t going to get anywhere without absolute superb clinical finishing. Stopping Messi is something the Roma defense was able to do last time out it’s going to be even more difficult to do it again so I don’t give Roma a great chance to do it but with that being said people have been under estimating this team all year and all year they have surpassed expectations. Roma will all out attack Barcelona they will use their Speedy players to try to instigate counter-attacks as much as possible. the question is if Roma is at their best making and effectively attack and are able to slow down Leo Messi Will it be enough? this is probably too much to overcome but never say never anything is possible. Regardless Roma wont go down with that the fight.
Roma’s Projected starting 11 4-3-3
GK: Alisson Becker
DEF: Alex Kolarov, Federico Fazio, Kostas Manolas, Alexandro Florenzi
DEF: Lorenzo Pellegrini, Kevin Strootman, Radja Nainggolan
Front Three: Cengiz Under, Stephen El Shaarawy , Edin Dzeko
Manager: Eusebio Di Francesco
Barcelona’s Projected starting 11 4-3-3
GK: Ter Stegen
DEF: Alba, Umtiti, Pique, Roberto
MID:Iniesta, Rakitic, Paulinho
Front Three: Messi, Suarez ,Alcácer
Manager: Ernesto Valverde
Roma’s Radja Nainggolan
Barcelona’s Leo Messi
Date: Tuesday, April 10th, 2018
Venue:Stadio Olompico, Rome
Kickoff: 1:45PM (USA) 7:45PM (ENG), 8:45PM (ITA)
TV Broadcast: ESPN