3 reasons Roma can win Serie A…and the issue they need to fix
I Giallorossi looking to end 17-year wait
Following Lazio’s sudden and dramatic collapse, the Serie A title race now looks set to be a four-way battle. And the Coral News Team think the value could be on their capital rivals AS Roma lifting the title.
I Giallorossi currently sit fourth in the top-flight, but they’re just four points off top spot. Eusebio Di Francesco’s men also have a game in hand on the sides around them.
It’s going to be a very tight race this year. But here’s why Roma could edge it…
Defence has been rotated, but always impressed
Roma boast the best defensive record in Serie A right now, giving up just 10 goals in 16 outings. They’ve been especially solid on the road, conceding just three goals away from home.
Injuries and the tests of different opposition have seen eight different players feature in defence for Roma’s league games. There hasn’t been an ever-present among them, but Di Francesco has been smart about when and how to change things up.
For tough away trips, he’s tended to start with experienced guys like Aleksandar Kolarov and Federico Fazio.
Meanwhile, the powerful and mobile Kostas Manolas has tended to be the option for home games where I Giallorossi are likely to dominate play.
Goals coming throughout the team
An impressive 11 different players have found the net for Roma in their 16 games. In fact, their last six goals have come courtesy of six different scorers.
Striker Edin Dzeko has been their top scorer with eight in Serie A, and 11 in all competitions. However, the Bosnian is enduring a lull in form right now. That means others have needed to step in – and many have done so in crucial fashion.
Fazio grabbed a 94th-minute winner against Cagliari on Sunday. Meanwhile, the likes of Gerson and Kolarov have also been unlikely heroes in tight games.
A player of Dzeko’s pedigree is always likely to rediscover his shooting boots sooner rather than later. But in contrast to title rivals Inter Milan, who are over-reliant on Mauro Icardi, Roma can still produce the goods even when their star man has a lull.
Di Francesco’s tactics working well
While the head coach has chopped and changed his backline at the Stadio Olimpico, Roma’s tactical approach has been consistent throughout. They’ve played a 4-3-3 system in all but one of their league games this season.
That set-up has expertly used the pace and creativity of Stephan El Shaarawy and Cengiz Under on the wing, to feed into the powerful and clinical Dzeko in the centre.
With the dynamism of Lorenzo Pellegrino and the toughness of Kevin Strootman spearheading the midfield, they’re an extremely well-balanced side.
The issue holding them back
Right now the only real obstacle for I Giallorossi seems to be a mental block in Head-to-Heads with their title rivals.
Their poorest display of the season came in August’s 3-1 home defeat to Inter, while they also slumped to a 1-0 loss to Napoli at the Stadio Olimpico.
However, Roma have managed seven wins and two draws since that defeat to Partenopei. That stands them in good stead for Saturday’s crucial visit to Juventus.
Roma are 17/5 to record a first win away to Juve since 2011.
Meanwhile, I Giallorossi can be backed as Serie A Champions at odds of 8/1.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing