David vs Goliath. Mario vs Bowser. King Kong vs Crystal the capuchin monkey of The Hangover movies. Me vs the cleavage of waitresses from Hooters. The sex tape of Paris Hilton vs the one of Marilyn Manson. Chuck Norris vs… well, everybody. That’s the best way to describe Roma-Pescara. One is always expected to win, better yet: one simply HAS TO WIN. Failure is no option.
Playing the bottom team with the worst defense (yes even worse than Roma’s weekly dog and ponny show at the back) at your very own fortress. I can think of harder games than that. But still, I was worried. Not much, just a little. You know, like going on a date with a cute girl you know inside and out (figuratively speaking you dirty man) but you’re still afraid to fart or burp in her presence. Or when you’re shouting YOLO while drinking gasoline and pissing on a camp fire or ripping apart an Emma Watson picture during a Harry Potter convention. It outta be fun but something tells you you might regret it if you push your luck too much.
Painful Pescara problems
Brief flashback: in my last TT I said that a win in either Torino or Inter was needed, preferably the Coppa of course, to keep our Europa dreams intact. Guess what? Aurelio delivered and gave me TWO frikkin’ wins. And to make it all 100% sunshine, lollypops and rainbows: the next two games were Pescara and Siena, both at home. Aka the Olsen twins of Serie A: no one cares about them. Which means: points, points, points! And after both of them, the clash Roma 1.5 (Fiorentina) - Roma. Udine helped us with a 1-0 win against Lazio so the fight for EL was getting rather packed.
But first things first: the tiny bump to EL-town called Pescara. Zeman’s ex-team. In short: they are shitty this season. Before Sunday’s game, they only got one point in thirteen (!) games. Their adventure in A will only last a year so it’s a one way ticket to B for the Delfini. This has two effects for a team and its players.
1) They crumble even further like a Lego house being smashed by the love child of Hulk and Dwayne Johnson (aka The Rock).
2) They have nothing to play for and want to exit Serie A in a decent, honorable way. The Zeman’s YOLO-way. Kamikaze anno 1941, Pearl Harbor.
Pescara opted for no2 in the beginning of the game. My stream died, just like my heart and most brain cells, during the goal. To be fair, they deserved a lead for being the more dangerous side. Again, Stektacular was partly to blame as he presumably drenched his gloves in oil pre-game. Caprari, a Roma youth product and Zeman favorite scored. Auch, well that’s a burn to the Roma management and transfer strategy no?
After Pescara’s goal, Roma increased pressure and got a lot of ball possession but sadly, they rarely tested Pellizoli. They send a lot of crosses into the box hoping for a Luca Toni cameo but Osvaldo or Totti are no Toni’s, our biggest striker is Lamela with 183cm and he usually plays wide. Erik tried a Torino 2.0 shot which was weak and there were minor penalty appeals from Florenzi and a handball from a Pescara defender. When your biggest hope for an equalizer is a penalty, you know things are getting difficult. It was quite sad though. The players worked and searched for a goal but something was missing, it was all too predictable and rusty. Roma desperately needed an Andreazzoli pep talk during the break, like he did in Inter. Maybe a little Destro juice?
After his double in the Coppa, Destro kept his personal momentum going and Roma equalised shortly after the break. Kinda a lucky goal but Destro did more in ten minutes than Osvaldo in one half. After that, pretty much the same course as the first half. Too little, too few. It just wasn’t meant to happen, maybe Lady Luck used all her magic on Inter.
My overall feeling after Pescara: disgusted. Maybe not so much for the display but for the two lost points. This easily is one of the sourish draws I have witnessed as a tifoso, it even feels like a loss. The Udine-Lazio result was beneficial for us so obviously, one can expect Roma will choke, it’s in their nature. But at home against Pescara of all teams? No excuses. Kudos to Pescara.
No matter how hard I try, I will never understand Roma. Maybe that’s why I love ‘em. One day they win in Inter, the next day their legs look like concrete when playing a small tuna fish. Even if they win all their remaining matches and miraculously qualify for the EL, this result will leave a sour taste in my mouth. Whereas Inter was all about celebration and joy, Sunday’s match was all about shame and dissapointment.
The humbleness award: Associazione Sportiva Roma. Even if you’re so called wolves, respect the tuna fish dude.
The YOLO award: Andreazzoli. For fielding Lopez, Osvaldo, Destro, Totti and Lamela all at once. And for accepting the job as Roma’s head coach in February, you sick sadistic man.
The Loria of the corner award: Piris. That truly was one of the worst corner kicks I’ve seen in my life.
I know the Inter game is far beyond us now but I still like to give my thoughts about it in an elaborate way: Destro is f*ckin sexy!
No really, Mattia scored in each Coppa game, five goals in total, and who doesn’t bank on him scoring in the final as well? Welcome back Mattia. Ow and goodbye Pablo, especially after Pescara’s poor display. Hope your house in England is cosy (but far from Suarez though, I heard he bites). It truly is a tale of two strikers.
• Here is a list of goalkeepers in Serie A and their stats. Just look at Stek’s position. Just look at it goddamnit. How the mighty have fallen. Also interesting: the top 3 is aged 35+. Anyone else thinking about Ballotta or Friedel as our no1 keeper for ‘13-‘14? No? Carry on then.
Honestly, I’m fed up with Stek and Goicoechea. I’m fed up with them giving Roma and us fans headaches. If you look closely at the replay of Caprari’s goal, see how long Maarten stays on the ground, completely immobile. A smaller keeper would’ve immediately stood up and maybe even saved it. He had to catch the ball with his two hands in the first place.
Just sell them both and for the love of God, buy a proven and star keeper. Even if we have to break the bank for him, do it. Enough is enough. Handanovic was a golden opportunity when he left Udinese. I’m thinking Adler,
Arthur, Reina, Lloris, Akinfeev, Curci, Mandanda, Mignolet (less known but as a Belgian, I know he’s quality), Eleftheropoulos, Valdes… Or you know, f*ckin play mancat, Lobont.
• Rumors in Romalalaland saying the new coach will be unveiled before the Coppa final. I hope it’s Bob Bradley. For God’s sake, he even looks like Michael’s lost twin brother.
• Last week, Zeman was linked to Inter. I immediately smoked two packs when I read that. No one can match Zdenek’s personal record though: five packs in two minutes. L&M legend.
• Fiorentina-Torino reminded me more of Roma than the Pescara game itself. The scoreline, Alberto, Cerci, Brighi, Montella, Prade, Pizarro, Lupatelli, Toni… So much memories.
Siena sending shivers down my spine
My reaction after the final whistle against Pescara. And with Siena, Roma gets another go: a doable yet tricky opponent at the Olimpico. Roma threw away five points against Palermo and Pescara in recent weeks and narrowly made it out alive in Torino. I shit titanium when I think how the team will react against the Tuscan minnows AND we still have to face Fiorentina, Milan and Napoli too. Better make an appointment with my cardiologist, looks like he will be working overtime. As is my local liquor store. And my secret library of Dhaw’s hot grid girls (bad juju). And my brain for deciphering why I feel so attracted to and dissapointed in Roma at the same time. Until next week after Siena, hopefuly less intoxicated.
“I would’ve really loved to play in the Coppa Italia Rome Derby. It’s certainly true that in Rome there is more rivalry. I always watch Roma and often sit down for their games on television. I had a great rapport with the Giallorossi fans, even though I wasn’t there for long, and am happy they still show affection towards me.” – Fabio Borini, 2013