Getty Images

Teenage Zaniolo sparks Roma over Porto (video)

Leave a comment

An emerging star in Italy has put AS Roma in good position to advance to the next round.

Nineteen-year-old attacker Nicolo Zaniolo scored a brace as Roma took down FC Porto, 2-1 in the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on Tuesday evening. Zaniolo’s goals gave Roma a 2-0 lead with just 14 minutes left in the match, but Adrian Lopez popped up behind the Roma backline and scored to give Porto a lifeline before the second leg on March 6.

In the 70th minute, a pass in the box found its way to Zaniolo. The youngster took a touch to his right and fired off a quick strike on goal, one that went through the legs of left back Alex Telles and in to the delight of the home crowd. Six minutes later, Zaniolo finished again into a mostly empty net after Edin Dzeko hit the post for the second time, putting Roma up 2-0.

In the 79th minute, a scuffed strike ended up falling for Lopez, who connected on the half volley to fire past Antonio Mirante and make it 2-1.

With his brace, Zaniolo now has five goals and two assists on the season, with all five scored since Boxing Day 2018.

LIVE, UCL last 16: Man United v. PSG; Roma v. Porto

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The UEFA Champions League last 16 games kick off on Tuesday, as Manchester United host Paris Saint-Germain and FC Porto head to AS Roma (both games kick off at 3 p.m. ET).

[ LIVE: Champions League scores ]

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer‘s United have been handed a huge boost as PSG’s star duo of Edinson Cavani and Neymar have been ruled out through injury for the first leg at Old Trafford. Solskjaer is hoping for yet another famous European night at OT as he remains unbeaten in his first 11 games as United’s caretaker boss. Thomas Tuchel and PSG provide Solskjaer with his toughest test yet.

In the other game Roma host FC Porto, with the former hoping to repeat their run to the UCL semifinals last season. Roma have the experience to advance, but Porto rolled through the group stage unbeaten with five wins from six games.

Click on the link above to follow live updates on the action, while here at Pro Soccer Talk we will have you covered for action during and after the games.

Serie A: Roma climb into 4th; anti-racism showing at Inter

Photo by Alessandro Sabattini/Getty Images
Leave a comment

A roundup of all of Saturday’s action in Italy’s top flight…

[ MORE: What we learned in the Premier League, Week 23 ]

Roma 3-2 Torino

Nicolo Zaniolo announced himself as one of Europe’s most promising young talents, with the opening goal in Roma’s 3-2 victory over Torino, a game in which the 19-year-old was the best, most dangerous attacker for the whole of 90 minutes.

Zaniolo was initially denied by Salvatore Sirigu, but the young Italian managed to collect the rebound and put it home on the rebound, all while on the ground. Aleksandar Kolarov made it 2-0 not long after the half-hour mark, and Roma appeared to be on their merry way to a third straight victory.

The score was 2-2 by the 67th minute, thanks to Tomas Rincon and Cristian Asnaldo. Stephan El Shaarawy had other ideas, though, as he slammed home the winner, courtesy of a perfect through ball from Lorenzo Pellegrini, in the 73rd.

Now fully recovered from a disastrous start to the season (just five wins from their first 15 games), Roma sit fourth in the table, a point ahead of capital rivals Lazio.

Inter Milan 0-0 Sassuolo

Elsewhere in the top-four, third-place Inter Milan were held to a scoreless draw by 12th-place Sassuolo, but the game’s real story took place in the stands.

With Inter serving the second of its two-game ban on fans being allowed inside the San Siro due to racist chants, more than 10,000 local children were invited to attend as part of an initiative against discrimination. Brothers Universally United hung anti-discrimination signs around the stadium and the players word “BUU No to discrimination” on their shirt sleeves.

Elsewhere in Serie A

Udinese 1-2 Parma

Sunday’s Serie A schedule

Frosinone v. Atalanta — 6:30 a.m. ET
Fiorentina v. Sampdoria — 9 a.m. ET
SPAL v. Bologna — 9 a.m. ET
Cagliari v. Empoli — 12 p.m. ET
Napoli v. Lazio — 2:30 p.m. ET

Serie A: Juve make it 8 straight; Napoli squeeze by SPAL

Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images
Leave a comment

A roundup of all of Saturday’s action in Italy’s top flight…

[ MORE: What did we learn in the Premier League, Week 18? ]

Juventus 1-0 Roma

Juve eked out a 1-0 victory over Roma on Saturday, guaranteeing themselves the top-of-the-table place when Serie A hits its annual winter break next week.

Mario Mandzukic scored the game’s only goal in the 35th minute, getting on the end of a floated cross to the back post from Mattia De Sciglio. Juve’s march toward an eighth straight scudetto shows no signs whatsoever of slowing down, as they’re already out to an eight-point lead with 21 games still to play.

Napoli 1-0 SPAL

If Juve were to slip up in the most unexpected of ways, the opportunity to usurp Massimiliano Allegri’s side would fall to Carlo Ancelotti and Napoli.

Like Juve, they were victorious by a 1-0 final score on Saturday, thanks to Raul Albiol’s 46th-minute header. Dries Mertens whipped in the tantalizing corner kick to the near post and Albiol beat a pair of SPAL defenders either side of him to glance his header just inside the far post. As things stand — and have stood for four weeks now, with Juve and Napoli each winning — the gap is eight points.

Elsewhere in Serie A

Chievo 1-1 Inter Milan
Lazio 3-1 Cagliari
AC Milan 0-1 Fiorentina
Empoli 2-4 Sampdoria
Sassuolo 1-1 Torino
Genoa 3-1 Atalanta
Parma 0-0 Bologna
Udinese 1-1 Frosinone

Serie A: Napoli’s stoppage-time winner; Roma’s comeback

Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images
Leave a comment

A roundup of all of Sunday’s action in Italy’s top flight…

[ SATURDAY: Cristiano Ronaldo scores winner in his first Turin derby ]

Cagliari 0-1 Napoli

Arkadiusz Milik scored a stoppage-time winner to hand Napoli all three points and keep them within eight points of runaway leaders and presumed champions-elect Juventus.

Roma 3-2 Genoa

There is very little doubt about who will likely almost certainly win the Serie A title this season — that honor appears reserved for Juventus, for the eighth straight year — and Napoli and Inter Milan have pretty well established themselves as the second- and third-best teams, interchangeably, which leaves anywhere from three to nine teams with dreams of finishing fourth.

As things stand, five teams are within three points of fourth place, including Roma who needed a comeback (twice) to beat Genoa on Sunday and move to within two points of AC Milan for the final UEFA Champions League place. It should be noted that fourth-place Milan and fifth-place Lazio are yet to play their round-16 fixture.

A dreadful start to the season (just one win from their first five league games) has relented very little for Eusebio Di Francesco’s side which has now won just two of its last eight league games.

Krzysztof Piatek put the visitors ahead after just 17 minutes, only for Federico Fazio to level the score just after the half-hour mark. The 1-1 scoreline was short-lived, though, as Oscar Hiljemark restored Genoa’s lead in the 33rd minute. Justin Kluivert scored just before halftime, setting the stage for Roma to assume control in the second half.

Bryan Cristante smashed home the winner from just outside the penalty area, set up by Kluivert’s cushioned header, in the 59th minute.

Elsewhere in Serie A

SPAL 0-0 Chievo
Fiorentina 3-1 Empoli
Frosinone 0-2 Sassuolo
Sampdoria 2-0 Parma

Remaining Serie A schedule

Atalanta vs. Lazio — 2:30 p.m. ET (Monday)
Bologna vs. AC Milan — 2:30 p.m. ET (Tuesday)