After back to back Serie A wins, Roma go into Tuesday night second leg round of 16 clash with Shakhtar Donetsk full of confidence.
After a slow start to 2018 with a horrible January where Roma looked bereft of confidence, things are starting to turn around and Roma will be confident to overturn a slight deficit to qualify for the Quarterfinals of the Champions League.
After winning spectacularly last weekend in Naples, Roma followed the away win with a 3-0 home win over Torino on Friday night. A tale of two halves where the away side where very dominate in possession and chances created with ex Roma winger Iago Falque pulling the strings. But in the second half and with a tactical change Roma turned on the style. Switched from a 4-3-3 which wasn’t working and moved to a 4-2-3-1 and which Radja Nainggolan moved closer to Patrik Schick and it worked. Kostas Manolas headed home from close range and dedicated his goal to former teammate Davide Astori. Daniele De Rossi volleyed home from close range and Lorenzo Pellegrini added a third in the latter stages of the game.
Shakhtar Donetsk are sitting at the top of the Ukrainian league table and a whopping nine points ahead of rivals Dynamo Kiev. Shakhtar showed their class in the second half of the first leg, trailing 1-0 at the interval thanks to Cengiz Under deflected strike, Shakhtar turned the game around thanks to goals from Facundo Ferreyra and Manchester City target Fred who scored a brilliant free-kick which his international counterpart Alisson Becker had no chance in dealing with. It could have been 3-1 in stoppage time if it wasn’t for Bruno Peres brilliant goal-line clearance, Shakhtar could have been traveling to Rome two goals ahead and potentially one foot in the last 8 of the Champions League.
In between the first leg and Tuesday second leg in Rome, Shakhtar have won all three of their Ukrainian domestic games without conceding. A 5-0 home win over Zirka was followed up with back to back 3-0 away wins over Karpaty and Vorskla respectively.
Both sides are going into Tuesday night game full of confidence after domestic wins. Roma will be looking to start on the front foot and wipe out the one-goal deficit while the visitors will be looking to frustrate Roma and to hit on the counter-attack with Taison and co. A great game awaits on Tuesday night and the potential of a Quarterfinal tie against the elite of European football.