In Roma’s 2-1 win over Juventus on 30/8/2015, we witnessed Roma achieve her first home-win against Juve since 16/2/2013. A far cry from the days when Juve outclassed, and pegged Roma back for 90 minutes, what we saw was a Roma in complete domination; a true Roman decimation.
It was a match filled with intensity from the starting whistle, regardless of the protests in the Curva Sud. Digne’s control down the left side showed that Roma seems to have acquired a prodigy, and his chemistry was immediate. Manolas raged with the soul of a Spartan, calmly dispossessing any initiation from Juve’s top 3. The midfield of Keita, Pjanić, and Nainggolan hesitated with Keita’s dispossession, but Nainggolan proved to be a wall in defense, and an arrow in attack. Miralem’s rainbow free kick was just, oh, the most beautiful; another masterpiece by Giotto. Džeko would not be denied opening his Roma account, in no better fashion, with the goal which won the match. Last but not least, lets not forget Szczesny, who saved the match with just his fingertips from a Bonucci header in the 93′. A class display from the squad.
It was the Romans who showed their imperial leadership, transforming in different roles, leading through the soul of Rome. Capitano futuro futuro, Alessandro Florenzi was asked once again to perform outside his comfort zone, being deployed as the rightback. With no room for error, he was fielded against some of the best players in all of calcio. Ale stepped up to the plate once again, proving that even if he is played in unfamiliar territory, his determination, athleticism, and skill can lead him and the team out of dangerous situations and onto success. Juve’s left flank was completely shut down, as Flo’s speed was too much for a Juve banking on the counter. The future captain continues to reiterate his vitalness to an aspiring Roma.
Capitano futuro, Daniele De Rossi also saw himself in generally unfamiliar territory. In place of Leandro Castan, Daniele was deployed at left centerback. Although Daniele has played in the defense for Conte, this role is very different: a centerback in a flatback four is no position easily understood overnight, with entirely different positioning and responsibilities from the sweeper role DDR has featured in for Conte’s hybrid 3/5 man defense. 73 touches, and stable positioning helped bring confidence to the backline. Available to Rudi and Roma, Daniele De Rossi showed a calm and coolness we so desperately needed last night.
But are we forgetting someone? Ah, we are indeed. Francesco Totti needs no introduction from anyone, and unfortunately, his face was missed in last night’s revelation. But it is exactly this attitude which deserves praise: Totti has been the centerpiece of Roma’s attacking design for the past 20 years, yet his attitude from the bench stayed collected, as he knew certain sacrifices needed to be made in order to win this match. It is these sacrifices which embodies his soul of an emperor. Indeed, Frank will find plenty of time as the season continues on 3 fronts. With his 39th birthday in less than a month, Frank ages with grace, reminiscent of no others in the world of football.
Our line of captains and their willingness to sacrifice for the idea of Rome will lead the wolves to glory.