The pressure is starting to mount on the Romans after Saturday’s defeat to Internazionale. The I Lupi (wolves) will be again in the hotspot on Wednesday when they host Bayer Leverkusen in the UEFA Champions League. Roma had the great opportunity to extend their lead at the top of the league after Fiorentina was defeated last weekend to the Giallorossi 1-2.
Instead the Nerazzurri came up victorious from a lone goal coming from Gary Medel and assisted by the former Fiorentina striker, Stevan Jovetic. The victory over AS Roma at the San Siro in Milan placed Internazionale second in the Serie A with 24 points and the Giallorossi fell to third.
AS Roma will need to bounce back with a massive display in the Champions League at the Stadio Olimpico against Leverkusen. The prior occasion that these two sides met left many thoroughly entertained with a 4-4 draw in Germany. Pundits have also scrutinized Roma massively stating, “if one can not hold onto a 2-4 lead then you do not deserve to win.”
After the Champions League match against Leverkusen, Sunday is the high octane and blood thirsty Derbi Della Capitale (the Capital Derby) against Lazio.
Italy has a plethora of derbies all mainly due to the regional rivalries but one of the most heated is the Derbi Della Capitale. Lazio on the other side of Rome have been handling a slight stumbling block with results, having lost their last two matches. Lazio were defeated on the road against Atalanta 2-1 and they were again defeated 1-3 at the Olimpico to AC Milan.
The advantage in the derby will slightly be in Roma’s favor, as both teams are competing in Europe. Roma being in the Champions League, and Lazio competing in the Europa League, will add stress on the upcoming derby. Lazio has been struggling in the Serie A and the added pressure of their Europa match in Norway on Thursday. AS Roma will not be traveling in their match against Leverkusen, unlike Lazio, so they will have the advantage of not having to deal with fatigue from travel. Lazio do have one trump card up there sleeve, Roma will be without their star midfielder Miralem Pjanic. Pjanic will be serving a suspension after picking up a red card against Inter.
The loss to Internazionale can easily be overcome. Roma will need to display a hunger to win, especially in the highly anticipated Derbi Della Capitale.