The first round of action of 2022 in Serie A kicks off on Thursday with ten games all in one day, this will be the same on Sunday. Roma first game of 2022 is a mouth-watering trip to the San Siro on Thursday evening.
AS Roma ended 2021 with a very disappointing 1-1 draw at home to Sampdoria, a laboured performance would be the best way to describe the display. Of all the praise a few days before had with the emphatic 4-1 win over Atalanta in Bergamo, this was not the way to end 2021 with mediocre performance and more disappointment in Serie A.
It feels sometimes with this Roma side this season under Jose Mourinho that it’s two steps forward and then three steps back. This is a new year and hopefully, Roma can build on what they got in the first half of the season with thirty-two points and kick on forward for the second half of the season and push for a top-four or maybe a top-five position and qualify for the Europa League. Roma do have two tough games to start the year with, Thursday trip to Milan to take on AC Milan is followed by a second mouth-watering game to end week twenty-one with a home game against Juventus.
Roma have confirmed that three players have tested positive for COVID19 after the winter break but only have announced two of the players. Goalkeeper Daniel Fuzato and Borja Mayoral have tested positive and are now isolating. Amadou Diawara and Ebrima Darboe are both unavailable after being called up to the Guinea and Gambia African cup of nations squad. The good news is that Lorenzo Pellegrini is available and is expecting to start.
PREDICTED XI | ROMA (3-5-2)
Rui Patricio, Mancini, Kumbulla, Ibanez, Karsdorp, Cristante, Veretout, Pellegrini, Vina, Zaniolo, Abraham.
AC Milan ended 2021 in second place in Serie A table four points behind city rivals Inter Milan who occupy top spot after a fine run of form with seven wins out of the last seven in Serie A. AC Milan sit second with forty-two points from nineteen games, but a run of inconsistent results has hindered a scudetto push.
AC Milan run of form to the winter break has been inconsistent in the seven games leading up to 2021 mid-season winter break. AC Milan had three defeats, three wins, and one draw. The sole draw was the away draw at Udinese on the 11th of December. The three defeats were back-to-back defeats away at Fiorentina and at home to Sassuolo.
Then a 1-0 home defeat on the 19th of December against Napoli, where both sides were depleted with injuries. The three wins were back-to-back wins over Genoa and against Salernitana. Then in the final game of the year with a win away at Empoli in a six-goal thriller with AC Milan winning the game 4-2.
AC Milan will be missing three players who are at the African cup of nations. Franck Kessie, Ismael Bennacer, and Fode Ballo-Toure have been called up by Côte d’Ivoire, Algeria, and Senegal, respectively. Ciprian Tatarusanu is missing after testing positive for Covid19, Simon Kjaer‘s season is over after undergoing knee surgery.
PREDICTED XI | AC MILAN (4-2-3-1)
Maignan, Florenzi, Tomori, Romagnoli, Theo Hernandez, Tonali, Bakayoko, Saelemaekers, Diaz, Leao, Ibrahimovic.