Tomorrow we face of against Lazio in what will be a very interesting match. Lazio have played well all season, and currently sit in 4th place, only three points behind Napoli in 1st. The fact that they have started the season in such a fashion, particularly after losing two key players in Lucas Biglia and Balde Keita is quite impressive. Ciro Immobile has improved since last season, and he’s banging in goals for the club. The player that has impressed me most thus far from Lazio is Luis Alberto though. His performances this season has been key to Lazio’s results, and he have to be stopped if we’re to get something out of the game.
After the Lazio game, we travel to the capital to face Roma on Saturday evening. The challenges are coming thick and fast for us, but we have a big squad that should cope well with it. Roberto Donadoni needs to rotate the team this week, if not we could be looking at some new injuries. Roma, under the guidance of new coach Eusebio Di Francesco, have been impressive thus far as well, sitting in 5th place, four points behind rivals Lazio, but with a game in hand. Roma’s main man to stop is Edin Dzeko, who has, like Immobile, continued his form from last season.
Currently, we are sitting comfortably in 8th place, and we can definitely be happy about our results thus far. However, our performances in the last couple of games have not been too well, and the loss against Atalanta should be a wake-up call for the team. As I touched on both in the match review, and in yesterday’s blog, we lacked movement in front of the ball, we rushed our passing, and there was little or no creativity going forward. This has to be changed, if not we may risk zero points from the two games this week.
My expectations for the two games this week are therefore this:
- Better passing: If we manage to control the ball better, we’ll have a far better shot at getting something out of the game and, in contrary to the Atalanta game, create some chances.
- More movement: It was a recurring theme against Atalanta that when a Bologna player had the ball, there was no movement in front of him. This makes it way more difficult for the player to pass the ball, and as a result we too often misplaced our passes.
- More flair and creativity: Let’s face it, besides Rodrigo Palacio, none of our attacking players created much against Atalanta. Simone Verdi had a couple of half-chances, but it was mainly the runs of Palacio that caused Atalanta some problems. Since Palacio now has teared his hamstring and is out for approximately ten days, other attacking players need to step up and create chances.
However, even if we lose against both Lazio and Roma that is no crisis. Our great start to the season has given us a bit of a cushion, and these are not the teams that we are meant to take points from. Thus far in the season we have won against the bottom half teams in Benevento, Sassuolo, Genoa and Spal. These are the teams we should beat, and if we keep on doing this we’ll have a successive season. Hopefully though, we will be in for a few surprises as well over the course of the season, as we fight the bigger teams for points and glory, starting with Lazio tomorrow.
That’s all for today, let me know what your expectations for the two games this week are, and I’ll be back tomorrow with a match preview for the Lazio game!