Frosinone are the type of team that Serie A became notorious for: parking the bus, catenaccio, stuff it in the back and hope we get lucky type. At least, that is what most Serie A spectators would be expecting. In reality, Roberto Stellone’s Frosinone side is a modern, full football fighting squad. In fact, Frosinone’s first match of the season saw them take the lead over upper middleweights Torino, only to lose 2-1 later on.
Before the season commenced Stellone warned the other Serie A teams: “I told my lads to relax and face the game the same way they did last year. Frosinone will make everyone suffer and we’ll always attack, especially at the Comunale, where our fans can give us that extra push…I promise Frosinone will take on every opponent with open football, hunger and determination. The attitude will always be the same”
The second week’s loss against Atalanta was also a strong effort, with heat maps showing Frosinone trying to press high and occupy the middle of the pitch. Regardless of the 0-2 that day, the first two weeks of the season proved that Stellone’s side would definitely not be going down without a fight.
With two losses in hand, Stellone is now forced to dare a bit more with his choices (#DaretoZlatan). While coming up against a true heavyweight in our Lupetta, he does have a secret weapon, one used only marginally in the season’s first two matches, yet was a one-man powerhouse in preseason. He comes in a small but sturdy package, all the way from Naples, yet made in Roma. His name is Daniele Verde.
Daniele Verde shone in 2014/15, achieving his first Serie A start. More importantly, it was his drive and determination that helped lift Roma when it needed, with a spitfire performance against Cagliari. His 2 assists split the islanders’ defense, and earned the title as Man of the Match. He would play only 4 more performances last season, and just 95 more total minutes.
If Stellone dares just a bit more and gives Daniele the trust he needs, he could have a very threatening fantasista on his hands. When Roma faces off against Frosinone this Saturday, we will all be awaiting his face, either from the starting gate, or at least a substitution role. Early signs point to Daniele as a centerpiece in the Italian attack for years to come, and it will be up to his volition if he feeds upon his ability, and becomes the star we saw in giallo e rosso just 6 months ago. Just as we hope in his maturity and return to Rome, we also hope that he does well to impress his true home team. Just not too good this Saturday Daniele.