We have reached the very end of the season in Italian football with only four games remaining we are in the last month of the season. Roma had a really strong April as they are unbeaten in their last five matches. Coming off an excellent performance as they routinely ripped through Cagliari in what was a 3-0 win for Roma despite being without Nicolo Zaniolo and Bryan Cristante. Roma is on the verge of Champions League finding themselves just one point behind Atalanta for the final spot. Their schedule favors them as the Romans have a great chance to achieve Champions League by the end of the season. Roma will try to extend their unbeaten run when they travel to the Stadio Luigi Ferraris as they prepare to battle Genoa and their second meeting of the season. Roma held on for a 3-2 win at the Stadio Olimpico in the earlier meeting that was a back-and-forth battle that ultimately ended with a Bryan Cristante late goal. While Roma is in good form Genoa is in the worst form of the season being winless in their last five matches. Even though they are six points clear of relegation if they continue to perform in the way they have they might find themselves being dragged down into that battle. Relegation teams are typically difficult matches especially at this point of the season and they will be at home at the Stadio Luigi Ferrari. In terms of form, they are polar opposites as Roma should find no problem winning another game at that Stadium after beating Sampdoria just a few weeks ago. Roma is fighting for Champions League and Genoa are fighting for survival that may already be confirmed. Will it be Roma’s continued great form? or does Genoa still have a little fight left? we will find all that and more when Roma makes the trip to Genoa on Sunday afternoon to do battle.
A.S Roma 5th 16-10-8 58Pts
Presumably, Claudio Ranieri will maintain his 4-2-3-1 formation that he has used during this good run of form. Nicolo Zaniolo and Bryan Cristante missed last week’s game due to suspension they are both expected to return it to the starting 11. We shouldn’t see it too many changes from Roma after playing so well last week. Antonio Mirante will continue to control the reins in the Roma goal as he will be joined Roma back line as Roma’s starting defense it’s completely healthy once again. In the defensive Midfield, Bryan Cristante will return taking his spot after his suspension. However last week Javier Pastore came in and performed which took a lot of people off guard because he had not played in months. I think he is earned another start as I think he will be partnered with Bryan Cristante in Roma’s defensive Midfield as I view him as a better option than Steven Nzonzi at this moment. After his performance, he at least should be given another star to see if he can repeat performance. Unfortunately, there will be a slight change in Romans attacking Midfield after Justin kluivert is doubtful to play the game following a training injury I don’t know what that means for the rest of his campaign but certainly he will not get the start on Sunday. In Central Midfield position we should expect to see Lorenzo Pellegrini once again. With the Return to Nicolo Zaniolo on the outside as he will come in for the injured at Justin kluivert. Then on the other side will likely be player-of-the-month winner Stephan El Shaarawy as he has it been in fantastic form since his return from his injury. Then up front as Romans main Striker we should see edin Dzeko despite the fact he’s not having a great season Roma do not have other alternatives in that position. My key player for Roma is a Stephan El Shaarawy I think he can use his speed and athleticism to get into dangerous areas that could potentially cause problems for a very exposable Genoa defense. Roma should have more than enough to get past Genoa one as their fight for Champions League will only intensify.
Genoa 16th 5-11-15 35Pts
This is a different Genoa with teams to the last time these two teams faced. They are without polish Superstar Kristoff Piatek who was sold to AC Milan in January. He was one of the goal scorers in the last match between these two teams and certainly, they have missed him since. This team has not won a game since March 17th they are in a miserable form and there is a slight fear they could get dragged down into the relegation battle. Despite that, I do not think Genoa what will be taking any risks. Much like last week, we are likely to see very defensive tactics from the opposition. Genoa has lined up in the 5-3-2 formation for several weeks I think it’s highly unlikely they will change that. Even though they’re not playing well and even though they’re in the situations I don’t think they are prepared to take risks. Given the Firepower that Roma’s lineup will posses, they want to make things as difficult as they possibly can for the Romans to get through an occupied defense. The logic behind it it’s trying to pack the box with as many bodies as they possibly can making it difficult for Roma to be able to cut through and create problems meanwhile having the attacking Midfield feeding Strikers upfront in their attack. Kouamé & Pandev are both very capable goal scorers and Genoa will depend on them to give them their best chance in what will be a very difficult match. My key player for Genoa is Kouamé he is an explosive Striker with a gifted passing ability if he’s able to get into spaces he can be very dangerous.
Roma is actively in a Champions League race that is incredibly tight with just a few matches to go. As I have said on many times they have the easiest schedule out of all the teams who are chasing that elusive final Champions League spot. A result here would be huge because of how difficult it can be at times at this ground. Roma understands and knows the importance of results at this stage of the Season there only four games returning to inconsistency can effectively ruin their Champions League ambitions. Roma is playing their best football of the season and even though this may be a tough place to play Roma are capable of getting the job done. With all that being said relegation teams are the hardest to play near the end of the season because their future is uncertain. Genoa will make things tough at times but this is one of those games where I still like Roma to take advantage early and continue to attack them. Genoa tactics will be to try to play for any points they can get they won’t risk anything. If they do they could get in serious trouble given the firepower that Roma possesses. Games like these are always tough in fact this is probably the last Road game this season that Roma will play that could be viewed as a difficult atmosphere. Genoa will go play defensive and try to jam Roma in two different scenarios and angles. However, it is going to be hard to stop a team like Roma who has momentum and confidence that seemed to be non-existent the majority of the season. They have Pace athleticism and passing intelligence. The speed of El Shaarawy can it be incredibly difficult to handle. Not to mention Roma will have Lorenzo Pellegrini and Nicolo Zaniolo who have speed and passing intelligence. Roma has all the weapons required to get into dangerous areas if they’re able to break through Genoa’s 5-man defense Roma can and it will create trouble. An early lead for Roma will cause Genoa to make ill-advised decisions which evidently can leave them open and exposed. Make no mistake Roma should have no difficulty getting to the end of this game. They have more quality they’re in a better form and they will have a lot more confidence going forward. Using the defensive Midfield with Bryan Cristante he’s capable of the igniting ball movement with speed on the outside intelligent passing through the middle if they’re able to feed Dzeko inside the Box this game could get out of hand pretty quickly. Typically when you playing a relegation team you want to be very wary but Genoa has been as bad as anyone in Italian football. Winless since March 17th that is over a month ago they are playing with no confidence I question if they will be motivated enough. However, if culminate and come together to play excellent defensive football and attack Roma do long ball play to feed their Strikers still have a chance at something. It will be a slim chance the way Roma is playing and what they’re fighting for but if Genoa is going to have any chance they must defend to an extraordinary level. While creating space for their Strikers to operate. If things aren’t going well Genoa will be forced to make adjustments and that is when Roma will kill them. I would be Beyond shocked if Roma doesn’t run through them they will be too reliant on the two Strikers and if Roma can neutralize the attack Genoa will suffocate.
Roma’s Projected starting XI 4-2-3-1
GK: Antonio Mirante
DEF: Alex Kolarov, Federico Fazio, Kostas Manolas, Alexandro Florenzi
DEF MID: Bryan Cristante, Javier Pastore
ATT MID: Stephen El Shaarawy, Lorenzo Pellegrini, Nicolo Zaniolo
Striker: Edin Dzeko
Manager: Claudio Raneri
Genoa’s Projected starting XI 5-3-2
Genoa Manager: Cesare Prandelli
Players to Watch
Roma’s Stephen El Shaarawy & Genoa’s Christian Kouamé
Date: Sunday May 5th, 2019
Venue: Stadio Lugi Ferraris, Genoa
Kickoff: 11:00AM (USA) 5:00PM (ENG), 6:00PM (ITA)
TV Broadcast: Sky Italia, ESPN+