Palermo v Roma
Someone let the children out to play.
Suspended: Marco, Pablo, Maarten
Injured: Miralem, Rodrigo, Simone, Juan, Nico
Ever Hobbled: Francesco
Considering the back five as the last fibrous strand of Luis' sanity, it will now be missing four of the "ideal" five, and Bogdan Lobont will be required to clean up after post-Palermo Simon Kjaer's messes. Oh, this will unfold splendiferously without a doubt.
Well known fact: Roma's woeful at the Renzo Barbera. They haven't won there since Ludovic Giuly was making Miccoli feel like Gulliver, but Palermo does have a new coach, one of the wonderful gifts that is Maurizio Zamparini as owner of a Serie A club, so that's working within any and all hypotheses at the moment.
The rest is tied up in a nice little starters-are-okay-but-it-gets-dicey-after-that bow, to be yanked with an inevitable injury in defense and Totti's sixtieth minute substitution. The midfield has Lady Gago back, but Daniele De Rossi is the backup for central defense, and he plays in or around central defense about 70% of the time anyway. Don't even ask what happens when Kjaer gets his 37th minute red card.
New rule for the summer: if they do keep Juan, he doesn't count towards the depth chart. Nothin'. He's just a bonus across the board now. Four central defenders + Juan. And a personal assistant to groom his impeccable mustache. Possibly a transplant for the entire lower half of his body.
Hey, we've found some use for Okaka Chuka with the senior squad after all.
DE ROSSI Daniele
VALDES J. Angel
Those in italics are children and thus need a permission slip from mommy.
One of the better yet more annoying features of Luis' tenure is his willingness to hand out free caps to the youth like some rite of passage to manhood - Saba takes care of the "other part" - including Federico "What Did I Do To Deserve This?" Viviani in DDR's DM/CB3/Whipping Post slot. This means actually caring to notice the Primavera, rather than simply swathing them all with "Italian youth is overhyped, talk to me when you're starring on loan for one of the B sides (Lecce, Siena, etc) or have thunder thighs like Okaka." This isn't ideal. I utterly loathe nearly all sports of the amateur variety, those of a sub-professional quality, and the best possible way to describe it is this: Do you like eggs? I like eggs. But do you eat your eggs half-cooked in the pan? No, because they might make you sick.
That said...it might be worth paying attention to the elder De Rossi's team from now on, since any could be starting for the senior side at a moment's notice. The pass between the senior and youth sides has become much like the Roman defense: wide open and everyone's welcome. This is the portion where you make dirty jokes in your head.
Tallo's the attacking Ivory Coaster pipped from Chievo, Ricci is a midfielder and Piscitella's nearly a known quantity at this point - a solid 17ish minutes so far? (Double that, actually.)
Rosi, Kjaer, Heinze, Angel
Gago, DDR, Marquinho
None of the true children are likely to play unless things get out of hand. Things have a very real chance of getting out of hand in one or both directions.
Welcome to AS Roma.