Wednesday April 17 2013
Roma’s coaching conundrum

Aurelio Andreazzoli has steered Roma back into European contention following Zdenek Zeman’s dismissal. Luca Cetta asks if he is worthy of the full-time coaching position.

The writing was on the wall following another Roma capitulation, this time a 4-2 defeat at the hands of Cagliari. A day later Zdenek Zeman was dismissed as Coach. That was February 2. Installed in the short term was Aurelio Andreazzoli, a technical Coach who first arrived at Trigoria under Luciano Spalletti.

Zeman’s sacking triggered the usual list of linked replacements for 2013-14. Walter Mazzarri, Massimiliano Allegri, Carlo Ancelotti and Laurent Blanc were put forth as main candidates. Franco Baldini admitted the Giallorossi were interested in the latter. Others such as Christian Panucci, Marco Giampaolo and Alberto De Rossi were also mentioned. Yet given Andreazzoli’s start to life in the Lupi hotseat, could Roma’s next permanent Coach be right under their noses?

He hopes to be given an opportunity. “I am absolutely ready to be the Coach next season. If I accepted the job now, why wouldn’t I in future?” That was in February. In a later interview Andreazzoli stated: “If I’m honest, I do think that I deserve to be confirmed in the job.”

The second Zeman era saw the odd breathtaking performance, but endured an abject ending. A five-match winless streak opened 2013, culminating in the Cagliari result and sacking. Roma then sat eighth, six points adrift of Europe.

Under Andreazzoli the Giallorossi have clawed back into European contention and currently occupy sixth, level on points with Lazio in the last Europa League spot. In nine matches they’ve won five and lost just twice. Defensively they’re more compact, conceding only nine goals. They’re still capable at the other end, netting 14.

Shaky moments remain, as witnessed by Torino’s equaliser last Sunday. On the whole it is an inexperienced defence prone to the odd error. But they are improving. Following a disappointing opening contest at Sampdoria, Andreazzoli’s Roma look a far more cohesive unit than previously and are no longer bound to one style and system. The Giallorossi alternate to suit personnel available and opponent.

Defensively Roma are helped by the return to form of goalkeeper Marteen Stekelenburg. His relegation to the bench was one of the more puzzling Zeman decisions. The Dutchman was immediately reinstated by Andreazzoli and showed his worth. Daniele De Rossi is another to have benefitted from the change on the bench, seeing less of it as a result.

The 59-year-old has a supporter in defender Leandro Castan. “Now the Coach speaks with the players. Now there is harmony. Zeman didn’t say a single word to me in six months. Andreazzoli from the first day asked me what I liked and what I didn’t...I’m rooting for Andreazzoli to stay.”

Initially sceptical, Roma legend Giuseppe Giannini too has been won over. “Andreazzoli has managed to give the team more solidity. He is doing really well with the opportunity he has been given. If he continues like this then he would deserve to stay. Especially as I wouldn’t want another Vincenzo Montella situation.”

Another feather in the Andreazzoli cap comes in the form of the Coppa Italia. Should tonight Roma hold their 2-1 first leg advantage over Inter, they’ll reach the decider versus Lazio. Winning the competition would seal Roma’s place in Europe next term. Just securing a Derby della Capitale Final may do so too, depending on Lazio’s final League position. Walter Sabatini has called the Inter match “fundamental for our season.”

It might ‘only’ be the Coppa, but rest assure both sides of the Roman divide will be pining for a Cup triumph over their other. It would look favourable for Andreazzoli’s coaching ambition to steer Roma to Europe, seal their 10th Coppa triumph against their hated rivals, plus their first trophy since 2007-08.

Bigger names have been linked, but the Giallorossi must ask if they can lure them to the capital. There is also the question of squad stability – would another change be beneficial? And as Giannini alluded to, Roma let a talented Coach slip through their fingers when Montella was overlooked on a permanent basis. He went from strength to strength as Roma fumbled. Would they regret the same type of situation occurring?

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Have your say...
I think Roma lacks of consistency in terms of playing style under Andreazzoli. But it is quite understandable since he only got little time to rebuild the team after Zeman's sacking. The Coppa would be the ultimate test to prove whether he deserves the job or not. I'm just glad we finished on top Lazio.
on the 25th May, 2013 at 12:04am
Aurelio Andreazzoli is quality. He is the new coming of Spaletti and that is exactly what Roma needs. I've been a Roma fan for so long, and the most exciting football came from Spaletti. Zeman knew how to attack, but not how to defend. If our bench is more consistent, so will the results. One thing I hope Andreazzoli can take from Zeman is the trust in our youth. Marquinhos and Romagnoli are going to do BIG things for Roma
on the 20th April, 2013 at 10:08pm
I don't want him he has no power he let's the players run the team. At the end of the year Roma will do everything Zeman wanted stek will go so will osvaldo and I hope we see less of de Rossi as well. The only thing that has changed since sacking Zeman is that now we play boring hard to watch football. Ridateci er Boemo!!!
on the 19th April, 2013 at 12:59am
I really do think that Andrezzoli deserve a chance to build something that will last longer than some months. I definitely think that his coaching last night made the difference and I dont know the last time I saw Roma switch tactics (for the better) at halftime and reappear in the second half as a new team. A coach that have the ability to coach our squad to a victory in a coppa semi final, deserve some more time with the team. I dont really see how ANY tactician would do a better job.
on the 18th April, 2013 at 4:01pm
I agree with La Magica in that Roma's football under him has been poor even last night they were ordinary though they won against an Inter side that was made to look world class in the 1st half. I do not understand why Marquinho is in the team as for me he is very average and to be chosen ahead of Balzaretti is madness to me. Under Zeman they played some outstanding stuff but couldn't defend especially in wet conditions but they did create so many chances. I am not convinced he has what it takes
on the 18th April, 2013 at 1:24pm
A magical night. Very proud of my team. Yes Inter have huge injuries but take nothing away from us. We where great in the second half and fully deserve to go through.So pleased for Destro. We must stay focused on the league and finish as high as possible before turning our attention to the final, which is beyond words. If we can beat Lazio in the final, this is beyond words. The momentum is with us. Forza Roma.
on the 18th April, 2013 at 12:10pm
Some of you talk about bad games at Palermo and Torino. It really was bad, but i believe it was more of a motivation issue rather than Tactics. Some of you forget we beat JUVE, who are by far the best team in Italy for now. I would definitely look at alternatives before making any decision on Mister!. Of course if we have a chance on signing Ancelotti or other big profile Coaches, then i would debate. If alternatives are, Allegri, Mazzari, Piola etc, then i would keep Andrea!
on the 18th April, 2013 at 11:49am
Roma should keep him if they win the Coppa Italia. Why sack a guy who wins a trophy? Roma should also think of having some stability. The giallorossi have been chopping and changing coaches since Luciano Spaletti left.
on the 18th April, 2013 at 11:48am
I'd persevere with him. Roma need some continuity right now. Looking at Roma's players last night, there seemed to be good harmony amongst them. As for the game, Roma created a lot of chances, despite playing with little tempo or urgency,(ESP in the first half). This tells me that there is a lot more to come from this squad. I felt a little sorry for Inter, things just aren't going their way right now. Alvarez & Kovacic were very impressive.
on the 18th April, 2013 at 9:45am
I like AA and Zi think I would like to see him also next year as our choach. He reminds of Spaletti who was a joy to have on our bench, but he is able to adapt his team more to the opponent. Luckely I didnt see the palermo game but Zi think AA deserves one more year. Wont be any better bringing in allegri, mazzari or strama.
on the 18th April, 2013 at 5:12am
He's done well, but no way he stays, regardless. Roma will have a new coach next season no matter what.
on the 17th April, 2013 at 7:23pm
I agree Sam this game is pivotal to the rest of the year I think AA is doing just fine. We need more quality if we want to really compete. Thankfully Inter's injury list is fairly long and Lamela and Destro will shine hopefully. Hoping Destro can have the breakout game Aurielo is predicting. Should be a good one either way.
on the 17th April, 2013 at 5:55pm
I'm not sold on Andreazzoli. Yes, he did bring certain results, which usually happens after the coach is changed. Some of the games Roma played under AA have been the worst since I've started following Roma almost 20 years ago. First half against Torino was so abysmal, so was the whole game against Palermo. The team has no shape going forward, the games are mostly decided by moments of brilliance (see Lamela vs Toro) and if it wasn't for Totti, Roma would have probably lost more.
on the 17th April, 2013 at 2:42pm
patience. there isn't much time remaining, so lets see this play out. in the end, because this is a critical moment for roma, lets see what happens over the next few weeks. in critical moments, results do matter. i don't enjoy saying that, but it's true. loses will hurt andreazzoli chances, and wins will help make his case very well.
on the 17th April, 2013 at 2:00pm
This blog is about a month too early. Lose against Inter and a game or two in the remaining six games and all over sudden he will be criticized as inexperienced or not good enough for Roma.
I like what Andreazzoli has done with this squad, but unless he gets this team into Europe nothing will persuade the Roma hierarchy to keep Andreazzoli on the bench.
on the 17th April, 2013 at 1:19pm
As a huge roma fan I think he deserves the job. He has done well since taking over. Europe is looking possible now where under zeman it didnt. We need big investment in the summer to really strenghten the team. Paletta needs to deliver through whatever investment is needed. Next season if we qualify I want us to take europa seriously and try and win it and to try and push for champ league place in the league. Tonight is a huge game, we must get through for the sake of our season.
on the 17th April, 2013 at 10:42am

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