AS Roma 2-1 Juventus: Evra sent off as Old Lady suffer consecutive defeats
AS Roma recorded a 2-1 victory against Juventus thus establishing a strong foothold over their league rivals in their quest to clinch the Serie A title.
On the back of a loss in their opening league fixture against Udinese at home last weekend, the Old Lady travelled to the capital city with a hope to secure all three points at the Stadio Olimpico. But the Bianconeri suffered their second consecutive defeat of the new season, enduring their worst start to a campaign ever.
Massimiliano Allegri’s side have dominated the fixture in recent years as they have emerged victorious in 9 out of 10 games against La Maggica with their only defeat coming back in 2013. Juventus lined up in a 3-5-2 formation with Paulo Dybala and Mario Mandzukic up front while new arrival Juan Cuadrado started from the bench. Roma manager Rudi Garcia fielded a new-look attack as he partnered Edin Dzeko and Mohamed Salah with new summer signing Iago Falque while Lucas Digne was handed his debut at left back.
Lots of fouls as Roma dominate the first half
The match kicked off with the hosts in control as they put pressure on Juve in the early stages of the play. Tackles were flying in from the word go as both sides found it hard to search for an opening. The trio of Chiellini, Bonucci and Caceres were the busier ones out of the two defences as Roma pushed forward in numbers in their quest for the opener.
Paul Pogba was booked in the 22nd minute and just a minute later the first real chance of the game came for the Giallorossi after midfielder Miralam Pjanic puled off a tremendous effort only to be denied by the woodwork.
The shortcomings in the Bianconeri’s midfield after the departure of Andrea Pirlo and Arturo Vidal clearly showed as Pogba and co couldn’t insert their influence on the game. Pjanic was brought down twice by Chiellini who received a yellow card for his fouls. With the tempo of the match gradually dying, both teams went into their dressing rooms with the scoreline at stalemate.
After the break, Roma resumed from where they left off, marauding forward in numbers as they searched for that opening goal. With tempers heating up as the game progressed, Pjanic got himself into the referee’s book near the hour mark for committing a handball. But the Bosnian came up with a reply just three minutes later as he made no error in converting the freekick with dead accuracy to put his side ahead.
Dybala scores late on to give some hope but Szczesny denies Old Lady equaliser
With Juve trailing, Allegri’s men pushed forward for the equaliser but their task was made difficult after defender Patrice Evra was sent off in the 78th minute following his tackle on Iturbe. Juventus, down to 10-men, were stunned immediately as Dzeko who flicked a header from Falque’s pass into the back of the net.
Trailing 2-0 Juventus looked down and dusted as Garcia’s men pushed forward to extend their lead on the defending champions. But debutant Dybala scored for the Old Lady to instill life into the match and gave them hope to redeem something from the game.
With late drama creeping into the game., Juve kept on pushing for the equaliser and almost had it in the final minute of stoppage time. But former Arsenal goalkeeper Szczesny saved the result for the Giallorossi to grab all the three points from the high-profile encounter.
Juventus are in relegation zone having picked up nothing from their opening two games. Meanwhile Roma have moved up to 2nd place with 4 points from two games.