Bologna’s good first half display was cancelled out by a tepid second half display as Chievo Verona left with the points. The rossoblù are still on 39 points with a match left to be played this season, and could end up just a single point above relegation when the season finishes next weekend. Here is our review.
After several games with three at the back, Roberto Donadoni returned to utilizing his beloved 4-3-3 formation against Chievo. In came Adam Masina, Filip Helander, Blerim Dzemaili, Erick Pulgar, Rodrigo Palacio and Mattia Destro. The latter got his first start since the win against Hellas Verona almost a month earlier, but failed to impress and was subbed off after fifty minutes.
What we learned:
This game may well have been Simone Verdi’s last game for Bologna at Stadio Renato Dall’Ara. Having declined a move to Napoli in January, the rumors have resurfaced once again. Roma, Inter and Napoli are all rumored to be interested in him, and a move is very likely this summer. That means that the crowd at Dall’Ara may never see the attacker in the red and blue shirt ever again, but he did give them a good last game if that is the case. He was Bologna’s best attacking player on the day, scoring a penalty, and creating trouble for the Chievo defenders time and time again.
For the last four or five games, I’ve guessed that Donadoni would return to playing with four at the back, and each and every time I have been wrong. For the game against Chievo, I suggested that he would most likely stick with three at the back because of the many injuries. Once again, I was wrong as he changed it up and went 4-3-3. Now I’ve learned, I will never again manage to guess which formation Donadoni will choose.
A lot needs to improve come next season. Bologna can still improve on last season’s points tally with a win against Udinese, but the season should nevertheless not be seen as highly successful. A strong first half of the season laid the groundwork for a good season, but in the second part of the season, Bologna have not had much to cheer for. There will undoubtedly be asked questions of the coach in the season review, not surprisingly given owner Joey Saputo’s stated ambitions for the club, but the future of several of the players will also come under scrutiny. The goalkeeper needs strengthening, so does the central defence, and a striker should be on the top of Riccardo Bigon’s shopping list. Time will tell what happens in the transfer market, but strengthening is needed if Bologna are to push on and get into the upper half of the table next year.
Simone Verdi: The attacker was Bologna’s biggest threat on the day, scoring a penalty, being denied a great goal by Sorrentino, and creating chances for his teammates. He is therefore our pick for best rossoblù.
Bologna’s next match is the final game of the season, an away trip to face off against Udinese. A win there would send Bologna up on 42 points, one point more than last season. With them being only two points above the drop, one can expect them to fight for every ball. It will not be an easy game, as we’ve just witnessed against a resilient Chievo side.
What did you think of the match? Who was your man of the match? Let us know in the comments below!
Photo: Bologna FC