SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 6 - 29 Sep 2013 (19.45 UK)
Roma 5 - 0
Florenzi 8 (R), Gervinho 17, 62 (R), Benatia 26 (R), Ljajic 85 (R)
Stadio Olimpico

Roma crushed Bologna 5-0, including a Gervinho brace and stunning Mehdi Benatia volley, to maintain their perfect record.

The Giallorossi have never before won their opening five games of the season, so they had already made history under Rudi Garcia as well as being top of the table. Douglas Maicon, Michael Bradley and Mattia Destro were injured, while Bologna missed Niccolo Cherubin, Frederik Sorensen and the suspended Cesare Natali.

The Rossoblu won here 3-2 last season and were unbeaten in their last three visits to the Stadio Olimpico.

Roma had not scored any goals in the first half this term, but broke that record too after just eight minutes. Gianluca Curci beat away a Miralem Pjanic free kick and Alessandro Florenzi pounced on the rebound from close range.

It was almost 2-0 moments later, as Francesco Totti’s flicked pass found Federico Balzaretti, whose shot flashed across the face of goal to scrape a coat of paint off the back post.

Mehdi Benatia charged down a Diego Laxalt effort with his elbow, but the arm was flush across his chest from point-blank range.

Gervinho doubled Roma’s lead on the counter-attack, dribbling forward to smash a low shot at the near post, as Antonsson kept backing off and allowing him to progress.

The Lupi were absolutely on fire and went 3-0 up with a fantastic goal from Benatia. He squirmed away from defenders to hit a fierce volley from a corner that gave Curci no chance.

Alessandro Diamanti’s angled drive slipped through Daniele De Rossi’s legs and skimmed the far stick with Morgan De Sanctis beaten.

It was almost all Roma, though, and Gervinho sprung the offside trap from Balzaretti’s pass, but couldn’t quite dribble round the goalkeeper to finish it off.

Play became more difficult in the second half, as the heavens opened with a thunderstorm over the Eternal City.

Gervinho shrugged off the rain to score a fourth, as he surged forward and cut in from the left to smash under the bar.

De Sanctis needed his first real intervention on 74 minutes, fingertipping a dipping long-range Panagiotis Kone strike out from under the bar.

Marco Borriello thought he had scored for 5-0, but his screamer only hit the side-netting. Adem Ljajic did get the fifth on his birthday, surging through the dismal Bologna defence and chipping the goalkeeper from a tight angle to turn his finish in off the underside of the bar.

Totti should've had six to mark his 37th birthday this week, but dragged the shot across the face of goal.


Roma: De Sanctis; Torosidis, Benatia, Castan, Balzaretti; Pjanic, De Rossi, Strootman (Taddei 67); Florenzi (Borriello 78), Totti, Gervinho (Ljajic 65)
: Curci; Garics, Antonsson, Mantovani, Morleo; Pazienza (Krhin 64), Perez (Christodolopoulos 46); Kone, Diamanti (Bianchi 79), Laxalt; Cristaldo
Ref: Russo