Following two straight losses to start the new year to hated rivals Milan and Juventus, Romanisti everywhere were ready to hit the panic button on the season, anticipating an extended rough patch for the Giallorossi that would surely tank any European aspirations for next season. Since then, Roma have won three straight matches, including today’s matchup against Empoli. While Empoli are mired in mid-table, they have been a tough matchup all season, most recently evidenced by how they pushed Inter to the final whistle in their midweek Coppa Italia clash.
Having said that, you’d certainly be forgiven for expecting a nervy and tense affair. At least in the first half, the Giallorossi had other ideas, roaring to a 4-0 lead following a brace from Tammy Abraham, and goals from both Sérgio Oliveira and Nicolo Zaniolo, in perhaps their most dominant half of the season. Although Roma managed to hold on for the three points, the second half was almost the antithesis of the first, in which Roma frustratingly allowed Empoli to crawl back into the game, resulting in a nervy finish. Thankfully, Roma finished 4-2 winners on the night, but their second-half display certainly illustrated that there is work to be done before Roma put together a complete 90-minute display.
In case you missed any of the actions, enjoy the highlights below. If you want a deeper look, here is the extended highlight package.