After playing second-place AC Milan in a taught scoreless draw last weekend—the first positive result Roma has ever managed against Milan—the Giallorosse hit the road this weekend to face sixth-place Florentia San Gimignano. With Juventus wrapping up their fourth-straight league title and Sassuolo and Milan duking it out for Italy's final Champions League place for next season, Roma doesn't have anything of consequence on the line for the remaining three matches on the Serie A calendar.
They do, however, have a date with Milan on May 30th at the Mapei Stadium to decide this season's Coppa Italia champions. With 11 wins in their last 14 matches, Roma is one of the hottest teams in the league at the moment and will look to keep that positive momentum rolling over their final three matches: away to Florentia, home versus Juventus, and away to Napoli.
Florentia vs. Roma: May 9th. 15:00 CET/9:00 EDT. Stadio Santa Lucia, Santa Lucia
After pushing past Juve to secure a spot in the Coppa finale and holding Valentina Giacinti and Milan to a scoreless draw, Roma is slowly but surely chipping away at their remaining Serie A demons and a clean finish to the season and Coppa Italia conquest would set Roma on the right path ahead of next season—one in which the expectations are sure to be sky high.
However, before we worry about that, let's take a quick trip down memory lane.
For some reason, the official club YouTube page doesn't have highlights from the prior league meeting—a 1-1 draw from December—but these two sides met in the Coppa Italia quarterfinals earlier this year, and let's just say the results were dramatically different. Over their two-legged cup series, Roma absolutely WAXED Florentia by a 10-1 aggregate scoreline, indicating that their league draw was perhaps a bit of an aberration.
Over the course of this quarterfinal fixture, Annamaria Serturini (2), Agnese Bonfantini (2), Andressa Alves (2), Paloma Lázaro (2), Lindsey Thomas, and Emma Severini did the goalscoring while Allyson Swaby, Elena Linari, and Camelia Ceasar limited Florentia to only one goal.
Throwing up a 10 spot on Florentia isn't likely to happen tomorrow, but let's take a look at some of the key storylines heading into Sunday's fixture.
Keep An Eye On
Who Is Going to Play?
Look, with only three matches remaining and nothing of consequence at stake in Serie A, we're not going to split hairs here: the only thing that matters in this match is who Betty Bavagnoli will select for the starting eleven. Will she play it safe and limit her starter's minutes or will continuity rule the day? After all, you don't want to take it too easy on your regulars with literally the most important match in club history three weeks away but at the same time injuries and fatigue are always lurking in the shadows (knock on wood).
And for her part, Bavagnoli played it coy (awkward translation courtesy of Google):
We arrive, as I often say fortunately in the last period, with a great awareness, with the desire to continue to propose our game and to do well to get to the end of the season that still sees three races and a final of the Italian Cup. You get there with the right head, with the head that can no longer be distracted by hitches or any kind of justification. We want to continue to do well to reach the Italian Cup Final well
All matches can be decisive for those who take the field from the beginning and for those who have to replace their teammates. I have never hidden it with the girls, they know it, I am lucky because I have often changed, often I have not changed, but all the girls, at any time they have been called, have been ready. This is the spirit that must continue to exist in Rome
While the smart money is on Bavagnoli playing her regulars, much like we've seen with Paulo Fonseca's men's team, she may switch things up and give some of the kids match time. Perhaps Bavagnoli will rotate Tecla Pettenuzzo, Heden Corrado, Emma Severini and/or Alice Corelli into the match at some point.
No matter the case, after hanging 10 goals on Florentia in the Coppa quarterfinals, Roma should have more than enough firepower to dispatch the Neroverde tomorrow. If the Giallorosse can run up the score in the first half, Bavagnoli should be able to achieve both those aims: keeping her regulars fresh while also giving some seldom-used players significant minutes.
How to Watch: Roma TV+ for those of us outside of Italy and TIM Vision for those of you fortunate enough to live on the Italian peninsula.