Match Day 37
Roma V Catania, Stadio Olimpico, Roma. 20:45 local time, 14:45 EDT.
Roma: 7th at 52 points
Catania:10th at 47 points
Last Match: Roma 1-Catania 1
Vincenzo Montella marches Gli Elefanti north to Rome, back to his old stomping grounds, looking to cross the 50 point threshold and, one might presume, make those who matter at Roma sorry they let him go.
As you might remember, the first leg of this tilt was played over two days, after the original January 14th fixture was stopped in the 65th minute after, shall we say, some inclement weather made the pitch unplayable. Fortunately, Saturday's forecast is only partly cloudy, so the weather should not be a factor.
You may have noticed a recurring theme lately, Roma being in dire need of three points with their European hopes hanging in the breeze; this week is no different, as there is still a shred of hope for Europa League qualification. Making matters worse, a loss this weekend would drop Roma to .500 (15 W, 15L), not something even the most pessimistic of Roma fans could have envisioned back in September
The good news, Erik Lamela and Daniel Osvaldo are returning from suspension. The bad news, it does not appear Stekelenburg is fit to play, meaning Lobont or Curci will be between the sticks, the latter having left training early. Though, it is worth noting that today's training included additional focus on tactics....shrewd, Luis, pretty shrewd.
As expected, Enrique did not divulge any information about his future and todays press conference, preferring to focus on this weeks match.
That, however, has done nothing to quell the rumors of Andre Villas-Boas' supposedly imminent arrival. Valencia, who are also attempting to woo AVB, were reportedly rebuffed as he "already has something in his hands"
So can they put this all behind them? Will Montella's return to Rome be triumphant? Will this be Enrique's last match in the Olimpico?
The past, present, and possible future of Roma are coming to a head.
DE ROSSI Daniele
Roma (4-3-1-2): Lobont; Taddei, Kjaer, Heinze, Perrotta; Pjanic, De Rossi, Marquinho; Totti; Lamela, Osvaldo
A disp.: Curci, Greco, Gago, Tallo, Simplicio, Borini, Bojan
*once again, should there not be a separate match thread, have at it below*