Score: A.S Roma 3 Chevio Verona 0FT
Following a hard-fought point at the Stadio Olimpico against AC Milan. Roma head out on the road to face Chievo Verona for the second time this season. In the first meeting, Roma squandered a 2-0 lead in what ended up being a 2-2 draw against one of the worst teams in the league. Chievo Verona remains at the bottom of the table while Roma had a Champions League spot on the line with a winning result in Verona. Which ends up being supremely important given how tight the race is for that desirable fourth spot. Roma’s Champions League round of 16 matchup vs Porto is midweek which is why momentum seemed necessary. It turned out not to be like the match they played earlier this year Roma were in complete and utter control through the duration of the match from start to finish. Inside 20 minutes Roma opened up a 2-0 lead through Stephan El Shaarawy and Edin Dzeko. In the second half, Roma only improved on it as Chievo Verona was second-best to every ball. Alex Kolarov’s strike ended any hopes of a comeback for the flying donkeys. Roma ended up securing the three points in what was a 3-0 victory for Roma. It was a match in which they could have done better and scored more however Roma secure the three points putting themselves back into the Champions League place with an important Victory. Roma struggled with some of the lesser teams and Italy this season with that performance Roma win the season series against Verona and build some serious ground in the Champions League race. Roma now sits just two points from third-place Inter Milan. It was a statement game for Roma as they do the job when it was necessary the Romans leave Verona with smiles on their faces colleting all three points.
With Roma looming Champions League round of 16 matchup this Wednesday. Eusebio di Francesco made some big adjustments as well as giving rest to some key players. Roma would change to a 4-3-3 formation ahead of this match. In goal would be Roma’s backup keeper Antonio Mirante as Roma’s number one Robin Olsen has been given rest so he can be fresh for Porto. In a Roma as a defense, we would only see two regular starters. As Kostas Manolas and Alexandro Florenzi both given the night off. At left-back would be Alex Kolarov, Beside would be the centre-back partnership of Federico Fazio and Ivan Marcano. Then to fill out the defense at right-back would be Rick Karsdorp getting another start. Controlling the central position in Roma’s three-man Midfield would be Steven Nzonzi. To his left would be Bryan Cristante and then on the right side would be Roma’s youngster Nicolo Zaniolo as the trio makes up Roma’s Midfield. Then in the attack would be Roma’s 3-headed monster. On the left wing would be the speedy Stephan El Shaarawy. On the opposite side on the right wing would be Patrik Schick who starts on the wing for the second straight game. Up front as Roman’s main Striker would be the Bosnian Hitman Edin Dzeko. Roma also have a bench filled with qualities if they get in trouble.
After preparations and predictions ahead of this match, we were just about to kickoff in Verona. As Roma and Verona go head-to-head for the final time this year with the winner taking the season series. The game took a little bit to come to life with both teams feeling each other out. In the early parts of the games we did see some defensive issues early but despite that Roma seemed in complete control. In the opening 10 minutes, Nicolo Zaniolo struck a ball from but the goalkeeper ultimately saved his attempt. Just minutes later Roma took their moments to get off to a fast and early start. In the 9th minute, Steven Nzonzi released Stephan El Shaarawy into the box with an excellent through ball. El Shaarawy cut into the box making a move causing the keeper to get exposed before striking a ball from a very difficult angle that found the back of the net as Roma took a 1-0 lead. It would be Stephan El Shaarawy’s eighth goal of the season as he continues his incredible form against Chievo. An Excellence passed by Nzonzi and El Shaarawy displays incredible athleticism and intelligence to score the game’s opening goal. Roma found their superiority in the game after the goal. It looked a little bit chippy at the beginning as the game was starting to open up. However, once Roma scores the early goal they play with more confidence and a little more swiftly in terms of ball movement while Verona seems to be a little bit unorganized but at times looked dangerous. Roma was incredibly efficient in the first half and kind of picked their moments. In terms of chances it wasn’t a large number but when those opportunities were in front of them, for the most part, they took advantage of it. In the 18th minutes Roma struck again. Rick Karsdorp set Dzeko inside the box with a Swiss pass. Edin Dzeko cut and then turned before striking a beautifully hit ball at a very tight angle hitting the back of the net near the far post. Incredible ball movement and accuracy with his strike as Roma took the 2-0 lead. Following the goal Roma had to focus and concentrate Roma has seen a lead like this slip many times this season they had to stay the course rather than just assuming the three points would be collected. Verona came out a little aggressive after the goal with two decent attempts on goal but Antonio Mirante was able to deal with them. Verona had a fair amount of chances is through the next 10 to 15 minutes. Verona got in a good run of chances but the keeper kept Roma at length. Roma ended the first half with two chances from Patrik Schick and Edin Dzeko trying to convert headers from set-piece situations but was unable to convert as the first 45 minutes came to a close with Roma having a 2-0 lead thanks to El Shaarawy and Edin Dzeko.
A quick fire start for Roma with Stephen El Shaarawy and Edin Dzeko giving Roma the lead
A wonderful first half for Roma gathering the big lead. However, Roma must stay focused over those last stretch as they have seen a lead like this evaporate this season. After a two-goal first half, the gap between the teams was about to widen. In the 51st-minute Edin Dzeko orchestrate a fast-break for Alex Kolarov the Serbian drove the ball into the box before finding the back of the net to open Roma’s lead even more possibly answering some critics in the process as Roma take the 3-0 lead. Just a few minutes later Roma would make their first change of the afternoon as Alexandra Florenzi replaces Patrik Schick in Romans attack. Roma found themselves in complete control in the second half the balance of power had not shifted and it appeared Roma were going to finish the job. It may be the worst team in the league but games like this have troubled Roma this season this time they were running through them. Roma jacked up their attack as we got later into the second half. Ivan Marcano saw his header just missed following a set-piece. This was followed by Federico Fazio shot being saved and Edin Dzeko strike also being dealt with. It only continued with about 20 minutes ago following a multitude of Roma chances El Shaarawy set up Edin Dzeko as the Bosnian strike again was denied by the keeper. The match continued to carry on as we got closer to the finish line. Roma, seemingly we’re not about to let up. Roma brought on their captain Daniele De Rossi for Nicolo Zaniolo. Roma’s captain moves into the top 30 players in terms of appearances in the history of Italian football. Following the substitution, Roma came dangerously close a headed pass from Marcano fell to the foot of Edin Dzeko who shot hit the bar. Then just a few minutes later it happened again El Shaarawy hit the right post denying another potential goal. The Misfortune of the crossbar denied potentially two goals. Verona came close in response with Roma’s backup keeper making a tremendous save down the stretch. Roma made their final change in the closing moments as Justin Kluivert got a short run out. In stoppage time Verona tried to get one back but the shot misfired as time expired. After the final whistle in Verona Roma get a convincing performance giving the Romans momentum for their Champions League round of 16 matchup as Roma get back into the top four after a 3-0 win against Chievo Verona.
Kolarov Kills off the game with his second half strike
This was a performance that Roma truly needed. You never want to go into an important Champions League match without momentum. They certainly got it here it may be against the worst team in the league but it was against a team they failed to beat earlier this season. Roma has shown up to the big game but against some of the Lesser opposition, they have struggled. This might be pointing in the right direction. There was quite honestly only one team in this match. Roma did have some shaky defensive issues at various points of the game but overall Roma had complete and utter control, Chievo Verona. Roma started hot and fast this was one of the key parts of this game starting in the way they did help them get the result in the end. There was no push back from Verona quite simply they were overmatched and did not have the resources to deal with it. Stephan El Shaarawy scored again against Verona a team he has destroyed having scored in five consecutive games against them. In addition to that Edin Dzeko’s strike brought him to double digits on goal this season. Getting him going right before Champions League match is exactly what Roma needed. Roma left several starters on the bench due to rest for Porto despite that Roma found things really easily. I thought Roma’s Midfield performed especially well Steven Nzonzi, in particular, was brilliant. The man-of-the-match tonight was Edin Dzeko not only scoring the goal but Supplying the assist on another. Roma needs Edin Dzeko to perform like this on Tuesday as well and I thought today’s game gave him some confidence. An outstanding performance that could have been a lot worse than the 3-0 as a win is secured. Roma finds themselves back in the Champions League spots. It continues to be a tight race but Roma must continue to keep their head down and perform to their best ability. Roma goes on the road and gets the three points necessary not only to take them into the Champions League spots but to give them confidence and momentum for their biggest match of the season as they host Porto at the Stadio Olimpico in the round of 16 and champions league. This performance only enhances their chances in that game. Another encouraging performance after a week of a disaster this is exactly the response Roma needed the team delivered as Eusebio di Francesco job security gets a little safer.
Man Of The Match: Edin Dzeko (4)
BY THE NUMBERS
On Target: 7
Pass Accuracy: 81%
On Target: 5
Pass Accuracy: 80%
Top of the table
1.Juventus 18-3-0 57pts
2.Napoli 13-3-3 48pts
3. Inter 12-4-6 40pts
4. A.S Roma 10-8-5 38pts
5. Lazio 11-5-7 38pts
Bottom of the table
16. Udinesse 4-7-11 19pts
17. Empoli 4-6-13 18pts
18. Bologna 3-8-11 17pts
19.Frosinone 2-7-11 13pt
20.Chievo 1-9-13 9pts