Score: Roma 3 Atalanta 0FT
Stadio Olompcio, Rome
Following Roma’s trip to Turin last week that ended in Edin Dzeko scoring mere minutes to go to secure a 1-0 victory over Torino. Roma would return home to prepare for their season opener against Atlanta who cruised to a 4-0 win against Frosinone. Last season Atlanta and Roma split the season series with both teams would winning away from home. Atalanta is a team that has typically given Roma a hard time in the past and would be a tough matchup as Roma later found out. It was and enthusiastic atmosphere for Roma’s home opener and things could have not started better. In the opening 2 minutes Javier Pastore gave Roma the lead with a superb backheel goal to make it 1-0. Atalanta pressurized Roma and as they slowly broke them down as Roma struggled against their high power attack. Atalanta scored two goals in succession to end the first half on a 2-1 lead. Di Francesco made two changes going into the second half that change the game Roma turned it up in the second half. Alexandro Florenzi gave Roma some hope minimizing the deficit to 3-2. Then just before the end of the match Roma turned the game on its head getting a late equalizer from Kostas Manolas with less than 10 minutes to go. This helped Roma erase a 3-1 deficit to earn a hard-earned points against a very vibrant and versatile Atlanta side who looked to ruin Roma’s day. A phenomenal come back from Di Francesco and Roma got a result they should be happy with especially given the start of the match. Each team grab the points as Roma move into fifth in the table after 2 games in what was a exciting conclusion to Monday Night Football.
Eusebio Di Francesco and his Roma side operated out of there 4-3-3 formation. However there were a few changes from last week’s win. Most notably the departure of Kevin Strootman to Marseille yesterday who left on a 25 million deal to join Marseille. In goal as Roma’s number one would be Sweden’s World Cup star Robin Olsen who had an impressive debut last week. Roma would make no changes in their backline as it stays exactly the same. At left-back would be Alex Kolarov beside him would be the centre-back partnership of Federico Fazio and Kostas Manolas. Then to fill out the defense at right back the very versatile Alexandro Florenzi. In front of Roma’s very strong defense would be once again a three-man Midfield with just one change from last week. In at Central Midfield would be Captain Daniele De Rossi. To his left would be Lorenzo Pellegrini making his first start of the season coming in for the departing Kevin Strootman. Then on the opposite side as the right midfielder would be Roma new signing Bryan Cristante who makes his first start wearing the Roma colors against the team he had played for the last two seasons. The Roman attack would be very similar to last week with only one change being made. On the left wing it would it be Argentine midfielder Javier Pastore as he comes in for Stephan El Shaarawy. On the right wing would be Romans Turkish young star Cengiz Under on the Then up front as the main Striker the hero in last week’s win Edin Dzeko. As always a very strong bench with the likes of Patrick Schick Steven Nzonzi and Justin Kluivert. Slight changes for this Roma side but still a very strong team that has surely enough to pick up a massive three points and their home opener.
After preparations and predictions for this match day 2 addition of Friday Night Football as Roma clashed with Atlanta as the match took off at the Stadio Olimpico and what was the first home match of the season for Roma. Roma did struggle in the first half but it didn’t start that way within a blink of an eye Roma seemingly were off to the Races. In the 2nd minute Roma didn’t waste any time as Roma got in position to take the lead almost immediately after the kickoff. Alexandro Florenzi hit an unbelievable through ball just past the halfway line into Cengiz Under who collected it just outside the box in Atlanta’s danger area. The Young Turk made a move switching it onto his left foot before Crossing into the box when the unthinkable happened. Javier Pastore gathered Under’s cross with a back heel flick that rolled into the post before finding the back of the net to give Roma the early 1-0 lead. An unreal display of teamwork from Florenzi’s through ball to under cross that led to an absolutely world class finish from Pastore as he announces himself back in Italian football. Unfortunately that seems to be the only positive thing Roma did in the first 45 minutes. Atalanta looked unfazed by the deficit as they rolled into Roma’s defense constantly. There was a few chances by Under that missed the target but other than that it was all Atalanta all the time. The amount of pressure they were putting on Romans defense was ruthless. It caused them to make mistakes which Atlanta took full advantage of when they had the chance. There weren’t that many shots on goal but you could sense they were coming. Near the 20 minute mark the onslaught of chances arrived. Duvan Zapata hit the Left Post in the 19th minute while on a break away Timothy Castagne blasted it in the back of the next beating Robin Olsen who did not have time to adjust to equalize making it 1-1. 3 minutes later in the 22nd minute Duvan Zapata was it bullying Kostas Manolas down the left side. It was poor defending from Kostas Manolas allowed Duvan Zapata to create and break away as he supplied Rigoni with the ball and found the back of the net to give Atlanta the 2-1 lead. Again poor defending from Roma leading to an unsavable ball for Robin Olsen to deal with. Lorenzo Pellegrini tried a deep shot minutes later but it was a poor finish Roma really didn’t get much of a sniff the rest of the half. It was a Non-Stop ruthless attack by Atlanta as we got deeper into the half Atlanta stepped it up Rigoni got close to scoring a second but just missed near the half-hour mark. Rigoni setup Mancini moments later as Mancini put his head to Rigoni cross but misfired. Roma’s chances came very infrequently but with 10 minutes to go Dzeko took a strike from Deep but was saved by the keeper. Then in the 38th minute it went from bad to worse for Roma for defending once again led to Mario Pasalic through ball finding Rigoni who put the ball in the bottom corner making it 3-1. The first half ended with Atlanta in front by two goals. A disastrous first half from Roma thanks to 2 goals from Rigoni and Castagne adding another.
Pastore’s Unreal Backheel was the only positive of the first half as Roma found themselves 3-1 down.
An absolutely terrible first half from Roma as a very livid Eusebio di Francesco made two changes immediately. Justin kluivert and Steven Nzonzi enter the game for Lorenzo Pellegrini and Bryan Cristante. Pellegrini and Cristante did not play well in the first half they are two of Italy’s best young talents and will get better as the season goes on but Di Francesco was forced to make a change to add something else. The arrivals of the changes caused Roma to look a little differently in the second half and they did. Very early in the second half have Pastore had a chance but his shot went over the bar. Despite that this team started looking a little more in control as Pastore was a massive part of spacing out the ball in that second half. Then all of a sudden came Roma firing In the space of two minutes Roma had three chances. Kluivert saw his shot saved by the keeper then Under connected with Dzeko on the cross with his header just missing. Then immediately after that Justin kluivert tried an ambitious effort from deep that was saved. Roma were causing Atlanta to go on the back foot as the attacks just continued and continued to come. There were times in that second half in which Atlanta completely broke down and roma was mutually allowed to do what they wanted. There attack and their Midfield created a lot of opportunities for them. Then in the 60th minute Roma found life as Alexandro Florenzi perfected and absolutely brilliant play. Florenzi sent a through ball to Dzeko then the right back sprinted forward to the danger area as Dzeko laid off the ball to Florenzi allowing him to be alone in the Box. Florenzi then fired an absolute bullet of a shot as it ripped through the back of the net to minimize the deficit to 3-2. It would be Alexandro Florenzi first goal of the Season as Roma had found life.
Florenzi and Dzeko link up as Roma start a come up with Florenzi’s strike.
A few minutes later at in Dzeko gave Roma another chance but just missed. From a tactical standpoint Roma shutout Atlanta who had done nothing in the second half yet, Roma were fighting a point and it seemed like they weren’t going to be denied. Following that Steven Nzonzi who had since he got on was making such a big impact in the passing game took a deep shots that stung the keepers hands but he managed to hold on to it. Edin Dzeko tried a few minutes later but misfired. With less than 20 minutes remaining Alexandro Florenzi made way for Patrik Schick as Roma attempted to make a late push. Roma looked to be running out of time as they were playing against the clock. Then in the 82nd minute the moment arrive for Roma coming off a free kick. Alex Kolarov sent in a superb cross into the box. The Greek god Kostas Manolas caught the ball on his foot driving it into the back of the net to equalize making it 3-3 as they erased the deficit from 3-1 down. it would be Kostas Manolas first goal of the season and it couldn’t of come at a more important time. Manolas is a big game player as he delivers in another Roma comeback. Now that Roma were completely back in the game they were going for the win. Pastore connected with Edin Dzeko minutes later flat was saved. Patrik Schick then had an opportunity as he cracked a shot from inside the box but again the keeper saves. Finally at the death of the match Atalanta had a few Chances with Mario Pasalic. Then in the 94th minutes on nearly the last kick of the game Roma had one more chance to win it has Justin kluivert connected with Edin Dzeko but his header was saved at the death of the match. Roma’s heroic second-half performance earn them a points after being 3-1 down at half-time. An incredible display of grit and determination Di Francesco should be proud of how his players performed in the second half of this game Roman never gave the up at any point if Roma are able to make minor improvements this team could reach unbelievable Heights. It is a point split at the Stadio Olimpico a point that Roma has thoroughly earned as they blow away Atlanta in the second half.
Manolas Scores the late Equalize as Roma complete the Comeback from a 3-1 Deficit
Romans never quit a six-goal thriller took place at the Stadio Olimpico this evening as Roma call off a huge comeback after an abysmal first half. Roma did take the lead in the opening few minutes of the game as Javier Pastore scored an insane backheel goal to officially made his return to Serie A as Roma took a 1-0 lead. It quickly became a 3-1 deficit as Atlanta gave Roma all sorts of problems as they showed that this team is not a joke they displayed why I see them being a dangerous team this season. Throughout the first half they were absolutely dominant racking up over 10 shots and scoring three goals. Defensive errors lead to a terrible first half for Roma I don’t believe Robin Olson was at fault on the goals it was Defensive errors that led to a 3-1 deficit at halftime Atlanta put together a perfect game plan executed it succession in the first half. Di Francesco made the brilliant tactical chances bringing on Steven Nzonzi and Justin kluivert in the second half. This change the game they allowed Roma to play much more freely and Roma started displaying a performance that was polar opposite of how they performed in the first half. They were the dominant force in the second half and they kept chipping and chipping away hoping to pull off a comeback and potentially at least get themselves a point from the match. Alexandro Florenzi scored to give them a chance. Roma continued and continued to battle and fight before eventually just in the nick of time Kostas Manolas the Greek God saved the day off a set-piece scoring with less than 10 minutes remaining. A story of two halves for Roma but were able to come back from a 3-1 deficit to earn a point against a very strong and Technically skilled Atalanta team that is going to give a lot of teams problem this season. The lineup going into the game may have not been the best and there may have been errors made tactically but Di Francesco was able to correct them get them focused and eventually get them back in the game. It was a hard-earned well fought point. I think it was a fair representation of the game. Roma collectively could have done much better but their front three played supremely well with Under Pastore and dzeko all played up to their standards and ability. Roma will need to make some adjustments but they were just a different team in that second half. The man of the match goes to Pastore not only did he score the opening goal of the game he was very efficient in his passing ball movement and Leadership on the pitch I thought he played a complete game the impact he had was undeniable. Next week Roma will travel to Milan to take on AC Milan on Friday night a place where they have had a lot of success over the last few seasons if they improve and fix the mistakes there’s no reason why they shouldn’t be able to beat them especially given their unbelievable away form. A heroic finish buy Manolas to earn Roma a point they should be happy with as they have proven once again that Romans never quit.
Man Of the Match: Javier Pastore (1)
Next Match: @ Milan, Friday August 31st,2018
BY THE NUMBERS
On Target: 10
Pass Accuracy: 82%
On Target: 6
Pass Accuracy: 72%