AS Roma will be looking to bounce back after a disappointing last week with a strong performance away at the Mapei stadium against Sassuolo.
Roma week got from bad to worse, dropped points at home to Genoa who are fighting for survival in Serie A. It got worse midweek in the Coppa Italia Quarter-Final tie against Inter in Milan on Tuesday night. Simone Inzaghi‘s side got the better of Jose Mourinho‘s side 2-0 thanks to goals from Edin Dzeko and a thunderbolt of a strike from Alexis Sanchez.
The last two performances have not been up to scratch since coming back from the January international break. The performances have been really flat and something needs to change. With Roger Ibanez now picking up a knee injury and looking set to be out of action for the next five weeks, a change of shape in the starting XI needs to happen.
The 3-5-2 formation looked great at the start it sorted out the defensive problems, but there was no creativity in attack. Roma looked stunted in attack and in the last couple of games against Genoa and Inter, Roma have looked pedestrian, lethargic, and flat. Nothing seems to be working in the 3-5-2 setup.
Roger Ibanez’s injury adds to Nicolo Zaniolo’s missing trip to Sassuolo after his sending off in the final minutes of the game last week against Genoa in stoppage time.
PREDICTED XI | ROMA (4-2-3-1)
Rui Patricio, Karsdorp, Mancini, Kumbulla, Vina, Oliveira, Pellegrini, Maitland-Niles, Mkhitaryan, El Shaarawy, Abraham.
Sassuolo will be seeking a little revenge after the matchday three reversal which saw Roma score in stoppage time thanks to a wondergoal from Stephan El Shaarawy. Just moments later Gianluca Scamacca had his effort ruled out via VAR. A breath-taking end to a brilliant game which ended in Roma favour 2-1, which saw Jose Mourinho run down the touchline to celebrate with his players under the Curva Sud.
Sassuolo are 12th in the Serie A standings with twenty-nine points from twenty-four games. Empoli are a place above in 11th and just one point ahead of Sassuolo. Bologna who are in 13th are a point behind Alessio Dionisi‘s side. It is a little tight and congested at the top half of the bottom half of the Serie A Standings.
The start of 2022 has not been great for Sassuolo and Alessio Dionisi. It started with a 1-1 home draw to Genoa on Epiphany. Just three days later was the wonderful 5-1 away win in Tuscany against Empoli. Giacomo Raspadori and Gianluca Scamacca both scoring braces that day. Domenico Berardi got the other and opened the scoring. The next three games have seen Sassuolo only pick up just one point from a possible nine. 4-2 home defeat to Hellas Verona where Czech midfielder Antonin Barak stole the headlines with a classy, elegant hat-trick. A 1-1 away draw in Turin against Torino followed then last weekend saw Sampdoria under new/old coach Marco Giampaolo defeat Sassuolo 4-0. In the week Juventus defeated Sassuolo 2-1 to go through to the Semi-final of the Coppa Italia.
There is a big blow for Alessio Dionisi going into this game against Roma on Sunday evening. Sassuolo have been dealt the hammer blow that both Gianluca Scamacca and Giacomo Raspadori will be missing the game due to suspension.
PREDICTED XI | SASSUOLO (4-3-3)
Consigli, Muldur, Chiriches, Ferrari, Rogerio, Lopez, Henrique, Frattesi, Berardi, Defrel, Hamad Traore.