Stadio Olimpico will host Sunday’s Serie A derby between AS Roma and Juventus. The Giallorossi are eager to stay in the Champions League berth, but this match will be anything but a walk in the park for the capital club.
Key attacker Tammy Abraham has overcome his injury, and the former Chelsea man is widely expected to lead the line for the hosts. Chris Smalling is back from suspension, while Ebrima Darboe remains on the sidelines with injury.
The Bianconeri, on the other hand, are eager to move closer to the Champions League berth. Max Allegri’s troops have been in a fine form of late, and they are likely to rely on their rock-solid defence in Sunday’s encounter.
Manuel Locatelli is back from suspension, while all Milik, Miretti, Peeters, and Kaio Jorge continue to miss out through injuries. Anyhow, the share of spoils is on the horizon as Roma are tough to beat in the “Eternal City”.
Roma became the first side to lose a Serie A game against Cremonese this campaign on Tuesday, having also lost 2-1 to the strugglers in the Coppa Italia quarter-finals at the start of February.
A red card shown to Jose Mourinho compounded their woes, and the Special One must take his place in the stands once again when they face Juventus on Sunday. With the Giallorossi enduring an inconsistent run of form, the resurgent Bianconeri will fancy their chances of dealing the hosts another blow.
Roma have now lost four of their last eight games in all competitions (W3 D1), with RB Salzburg and Napoli joining Cremonese in getting one over the Giallorossi in 2023. Roma were uninspired against a side with the second-worst defensive record in Serie A last time out, with striker Tammy Abraham having been dropped to the bench amid a five-match goalless run. Against the very best, Roma have struggled this term – they have only won one of their seven games against fellow top-seven teams in Serie A.
The Giallorossi have lost three of their last four head-to-head meetings with Juventus, who have been in excellent form of late, winning six of their last seven across all competitions. The Bianconeri have kept five clean sheets during that run, but it is in attack where they are beginning to flourish.
With Angel Di Maria, Dusan Vlahovic and Federico Chiesa linking up, they have scored nine goals in their last three, while Paul Pogba finally made his second Juve debut in Tuesday’s win over Torino.
With AS Roma’s top-four hopes being hampered by their inability to beat those around them and Mourinho absent next time out, thinking Juventus for a fifth consecutive league win appears a prudent play.
Meanwhile, the visitors have conceded just nine times in 11 away league games this term – a tally only bettered by Lazio and Napoli (seven each). Roma’s attacking troubles mean a Bianconeri win represents a decent outcome.
Inspecting their prior head-to-head meetings going back to 01/08/2020 shows us that Roma have won 1 of these and Juventus 3, with the tally of draws being 2. A sum of 20 goals were produced between them throughout the course of those matches, with 9 from Giallorossi and 11 being from Juve. That is an average goals per game of 3.33.
Team : AS Roma
Regarding absentees, there is just the lone fitness concern for the Roma gaffer Jose Mourinho to contend with from an almost fully healthy squad. Ebrima Darboe (Cruciate Ligament Surgery) won’t play.
In all likelihood, Giallorossi will possibly kick off with a 3-4-2-1 formation in the match, utilising Rui Patricio, Gianluca Mancini, Chris Smalling, Roger Ibanez, Nicola Zalewski, Leonardo Spinazzola, Bryan Cristante, Nemanja Matic, Paulo Dybala, Lorenzo Pellegrini and Tammy Abraham.
Team : Juventus
Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri has to contend with a number of unavailable players. Arkadiusz Milik (Biceps femoris muscle injury) and Kaio Jorge (Fitness) are not ready for selection.
I reckon that Juventus appear most likely to utilise a 5-3-2 lineup, going with Wojciech Szczesny, Danilo, Gleison Bremer, Alex Sandro, Mattia De Sciglio, Filip Kostic, Nicolo Fagioli, Manuel Locatelli, Adrien Rabiot, Angel Di Maria and Dusan Vlahovic.