I'll miss the game and be gone much of the weekend, so I'll set up a discussion thread directly after the game and I'll let you guys do your usual wrap ups. And if the first runaround in Genoa is any indication, I may be glad that I'll be missing this one.
This game has nothing to do with form or paper lineups or any of that jazz - it has to do with response. Over the past week Roma has succumbed to a devastating amount of poor luck. First in Sardininia, when Matteo Ferrari placed a perfect ball past Doni and Marco Storari had the game of his life; allowing Roma to take home a completely dominant one point. Then Tuesday they lost to ManU despite outplaying them for much of the game and deserving at the very least a portion of the spoils. At the very least this must be mentally distressing. At the most it's mind altering, momentum stopping, heart shattering and confidence killing. Thus they have to show up both mentally and physically on Saturday.
This match will also be about who's there and who ain't. Yes, Francesco Totti is out, but Mirko Vucinic is more than capable of slotting in for him - despite not being to Totti's level (though who is). But making their way back will be Juan and Simone Perrotta, a good sign at the very least for the impending "I need a miracle" second leg on Wednesday. David Pizarro is suspended and the aforementioned fuckhead Ferrari is going under the knife and will miss 2-3 weeks for a meniscus issue. We may have seen his last game in the jersey, and that last game may have been Cagliari. What a way to drop a turd on the front lawn before exiting the party.
Regardless of who plays they have to respond and they have to respond victoriously. Still only four points.
1. Inter 68
2. Roma 64
Inter travels to Atalanta on Sunday.
DE ROSSI Daniele
Portieri: 1 Lanza, 83 Rubinho, 73 Scarpi.
Difensori: 3 Bovo, 18 Criscito, 25 De Rosa, 23 Ghinassi, 16 Lucarelli, 24 Konko.
Centrocampisti: 8 Danilo, 29 Fabiano, 28 Juric, 7 Rossi, 68 Vanden Borre.
Attaccanti: 22 Borriello, 21 Di Vaio, 9 Figueroa, 11 Leon, 14 Sculli, 38 Wilson.
Cassetti, OMR, Mexes, Tonetto;
Taddei, Perrotta, Mancini;
Back line I suppose is the question. Juan was called up but he absolutely has to play Wednesday with Mexes suspended and Ferrari getting the own goal homing device taken out of his knee, so will Spal risk yet another injury with this damn foot issue refusing to go away? Cassetti or Cicinho? I don't know. My gut says Cicinho, therefore I'll put Cassetti in there so that I can't go wrong. Giuly for a start perhaps? Or just plenty of minutes off the bench? Questions questions.
* - Philou is not actually suspended. Regardless, risking Juan is still a, um, risk. Yeah, a risk.
Konko, Bovo, Criscito;
Rossi, Milanetto, Juric, Fabiano;
Leon, Borriello, Sculli.
They can't be horribly unlucky three in a row, can they? Three points.
Score: 2-1 Roma
Goals: Vucinic (17), Borriello (33), Mancini (54)
Mancini Give-A-Shit Factor: 6.5
When: 1800 CET, 1200 EST
Where: Stadio Olimpico
Forecast: 15°C, partly cloudy.