Score: A.S Roma 2 Parma 0FT
Following a 3-1 win against Sassuolo at the Stadio Olimpico on Wednesday night Roma head out on the road to Parma in what was the final game of 2018. Parma has drastically out performed the other two promoted teams as they find themselves in the middle of the table overachieving what was the expectation. Parma at home is a tough place to play Roma came into the game after facing inconsistencies earlier in the season. The Romans have won two out of their last three games and are in striking distance of Champions league. It was a tough battle in the first half even though Roma had the advantage they failed to convert their chances in front of goal. Parma didn’t have a lot of chances in the first half but they played Rome a very tough and to try to hold off given the sizable mismatch between the two teams. It was goalless through the first half there were times where it looked like we were heading for a goalless draw. However eventually Roma were able to break through in the second half. The red hot Bryan Cristante found the back of the net again giving Roma the 1-0 lead. Then with about 15 minutes left in the match Roma killed it off for good as Cengiz Under gave Roma the 2-0 win. Roma have now won three out of their last four games as we head into the winter break. This team has struggled with consistency and we are now seeing many injured Stars return. When this team is healthy they will be incredibly dangerous. Champions League football is well in their grasp with only two points separating them from the desirable fourth position. finally we are starting to see the Roma we expected Eusebio di Francesco has Roma rolling.
Roma operated out of their typical 4-2-3-1 formation it was a very similar team with just a few adjustments made. In goal as always would be Roma’s number one the Swedish Fish Robin Olsen. In Romans back four it would be identical to the one we saw Wednesday. At left-back would be Alex Kolarov beside him would be the centre-back partnership of Federico Fazio and Kostas Manolas been occupying the right back position would be Roma’s vice-captain Alexandro Florenzi. In Roma’s defensive Midfield we would see the duo of the red-hot Bryan Cristante who has been Roma’s best player this month and the experienced Steven Nzonzi. The pair has really played well together this season. There would be two changes to Roma’s attacking Midfield. In central Midfield would be the 19-year-old sensation Nicolo Zaniolo. On the left wing would be the electric youngster Justin Kluivert. Then on the right wing would be at the Turkish is super-talent Cengiz Under. Then up front returning from injury would be the Bosnian bomber Edin Dzeko. Roma would also have a deep bench with Lorenzo Pellegrini Diego Perotti Patrik Schick among others available.
After predictions and preparations for the final match 2018 we were just about to kick off in Parma. As Rome would arrived to the Stadio Tardini in Parma. Two iconic Italian football clubs facing off on this Saturday afternoon with both teams trying to end the year with three important points. The match got underway as Roma controlled the possessions they pushed near Parma’s box the opening few minutes. There wasn’t a real superiority in the beginning in a match as it ended up being pretty evenly matched throughout the opening 45 minutes. Roma came very close and the opening 15 minutes as Bryan Cristante put his head through an Kolarov cross but just missed. A good opening chance the Romans something they looked to build on throughout. The match took a while to really develop with both teams playing each other extremely tough. Roma had not won away from home since October they were looking to change that. Roma’s approach was completely different than the one we saw on Wednesday. A high pressing attack play long ball football. With the speed Roma have on their team it was the most efficient way to attempt to break them down. Just prior to the half-hour Mark Cengiz Under saw his shots misfire from the middle of the box. Despite missing he got himself in good position. Everything was kind of running through the Roma Midfield as they infiltrated the Parma attacking area as frequently as they could. However Parma was up for it as well getting into good areas coming forward in a few scenarios in which they looked to be a problem. Luca Siligardi came incredibly close for Parma on a counter attack. He had a one-on-one with Robin Olson but the Swedish Fish goalkeeper made a tremendous save. Even though Roma has somewhat control of the match at that point Parma had moments in which Roma defensively had to be on their heels. The one thing to avoid was the counter-attack and for the most part they did that. Leo Stulac hit and ambitious strike after the ball came out of the box. Robin Olsen once again made a miraculous save to keep it even. Roma responded As Cengiz Under linked up with Justin Kluivert who came within inches of sticking it in the back of the net. Under hit a pitch perfect pass to Kluivert he put his foot through the ball but it wasn’t the moment. Then in the closing moments of the first half Edin Dzeko attempted a strike from distance that’s failed to connect. After the first 45 minutes it was a goalless game in Parma.
A somewhat uneventful first half as Parma having the better of the chances. Not a bad performance by Roma but were not consistent enough going forward. However Roma still had the opportunity to put together a strong second-half to secure the three points they desired to end 2018 on a high note. It would start well for Roma as they opened up their attack a little bit with a few chances very early in the second half. Cengiz Under missed on a free kick then Edin Dzeko saw his strike go to wide minutes later. Despite not scoring you could see that Roma somewhat reiterated themselves in the match regaining some control. In the 58th minute Roma finally got a breakthrough. Coming off a corner kick struck by Cengiz Under the Turk accurately placed the ball as inform Bryan Cristante put his head through the ball coming at a difficult angle as the midfielder tucked it into the top left corner to give Roma the 1-0 lead. It would be Bryan Cristante’s 4th goal of the season the 3rd this month as he has proven to be a offensive outlet for Roma. An excellent finish but a superb assist coming from Under who accurately placed the ball in the right spot his delivery was excellent.
Bryan Cristante Gives Roma the break through as he shows his immense quality
Give me just a few minutes later Kostas Manolas prevented a Parma scoring opportunity but felt his hamstring on the play. As he was forced to come out Roma made their first change of the game as Juan Jesus came in it to replace him. Roma we’re in total control as a continuously came forward and they had their opportunities utilizing their quick passing attack. Roma nearly doubled their lead just a few minutes later. Roma continued to come forward as Edin Dzeko nearly scored after Justin Kluivert Supplied the pass. But the Finish was denied by the keeper. Minutes later Edin Dzeko misfired on a header coming off a cross. Despite not quite the clinical finishing from Dzeko he had a good well-rounded performance. Roma would then make their second substitutions of the game as we saw the return of the Lorenzo Pellegrini as he replaced Nicolo Zaniolo. The Roman born midfielder wasted no time in making his impact as Roma killed off the game. In the 75th minutes while Roma attempted to break down the defense with quick passing Lorenzo Pellegrini made a terrific run in the box. He made a quick pass that was slightly deflected to an open Cengiz Under. The Turkish star slotted the ball into the bottom corner to give Roma the 2-0 lead. Talk about instant impact Lorenzo Pellegrini was not even on the pitch for 2 minutes and he already delivered the game-clinching assist. It would be Cengiz Under 6th goal of the season in all competitions. An excellent pass that ends with a proper finish as Roma seemingly kill off the game. Moments later Justin Kluivert drove the ball from Midfield using his speed and athleticism ran all the way to the danger area before striking it from distance missing the target. The youngster probably should have laid it off to Dzeko who is in a better position. Edin Dzeko continued to hold the front line for Roma. After a bad miss he came close with another shot that was set up by Under. Coming off an injury he played quite well got his teammates involved and carried himself brilliantly the finishing could have been better but overall it was a good day for Edin Dzeko as he was taken off for Patrik Schick to preserve the health of the Bosnian bomber. Moments later Cengiz Under came extremely close to a second goal as his shot was millimeters away from finding the back of the net. A late chance from Lorenzo Pellegrini missed as time expired Roma putting together a 2-0 win away from home on the last match day of 2018 as Roma now have won three out of the last four the Roma now find themselves on cusp of Champions League finishing out 2018 strong as we head into the winter break.
Cengiz Under puts in a man of the match performance as he kills off the game with a late goal
Roma win back-to-back games for only the second time this season securing a hard-fought win away at Parma ending 2018 on the high note. Roma have now won three out of their last four as they currently are playing their best football of the season. This is been a team that has been wildly inconsistent this season finally at the end of the year Roma have developed some consistency with their performances. Roma has picked up wins at home at the Stadio Olimpico against Genoa & Sassuolo and here today against a tough Parma team on the road. It’s their first win away from home since October it certainly was not easy and at times Rome struggled in front of goal but overall the performance give Roma encouragement as well as picking up 3 points to end the year. Roma have played well in four straight games and they finally seem to have figured out some of the issues that they have dealt with earlier in the season. Starting to get a little healthier as we saw Edin Dzeko Diego Perotti and Lorenzo Pellegrini all make their returns to the team over the last two games. The first half of this game it was a little bit of a cause for concern even though Parma can be a tough place to play a place where they have struggles as Parma have won 8 of 25 against Roma which is an extraordinary record considering the difference in quality. In the first half the game really didn’t open up that much Roma had a few good chances but nothing that really stuck. Parma had the best opportunity in the first half. The game completely slipped into Roma’s advantage and control in the second half they were the better team throughout it and dominated the run a play. Bryan Cristante scored his 3rd goal in December as he has been the primary goal scorer for Roma with all the injuries they have dealt with. Cengiz Under was unreal with a goal and an assist performance from the Turkish Superstar. Bryan Cristante and Cengiz Under led the charge in the second half that insured it Roma of victory. Edin Dzeko also returned making his first start since being injured even though is finishing ability in front of goal was poor his influential presence on the pitch was felt as he played a all around game for Roma trying to get his teammates involved as well as trying to score himself. Roma’s changed their approach and in the end it paid off. Parma wasn’t really in the game in the second half. They had a few chances here and there that made Roma nervous but outside of that Roma just took over in the second half largely behind the brilliance of Cengiz Under who gave the defense a huge problem he led the charge in the second half and played a major role in the victory taking his season goal total to six he is my man of the match for the second consecutive week with an outstanding performance. Defensively Roma still has work to do but they played the game a relatively mistake-free. Also Lorenzo Pellegrini returned and made an instant impact facilitating the assist for Roma second goal of the game. They head into the winter break in the best mood they are confident and have momentum not to mention they are a relatively healthy team now and by the time we return they will be at full strength. They have the potential to be incredibly dangerous in 2019 after such a disastrous start this season Roma find themselves in 6th just two points out of the fourth for final Champions League spot. DiFrancesco has got these guys playing the right way and Roma continue to play tremendously well. The Romans are cruising into the new year
Man Of The Match: Cengiz Under (5)
BY THE NUMBERS
On Target: 5
Pass Accuracy: 84%
On Target: 2
Pass Accuracy: 68%
Top of the table
1.Juventus 17-2-0 53pts
2.Napoli 12-2-3 44pts
3. Inter 12-3-4 39pts
4. Lazio 9-5-5 32pts
5. Milan8-7-4 31pts
Bottom of the table
16. SPAL 4-5-10 17pts
17. Empoli 4-4-11 16pts
18. Bologna 2-7-10 13pts
19.Frosinone 1-7-11 10pt
20.Chievo 1-8-10 8pts