SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 37 - 11 May 2014 (16.45 UK)
Roma 0 - 1 Juventus
Osvaldo 94 (J)
Stadio Olimpico

Daniel Osvaldo scored against his old Roma teammates as Juventus won 1-0 to set a new record of 99 points.

The top two positions were already secured last week, so this was the opportunity for a Serie A showcase between the best teams in Italy this season. The Bianconeri were still hoping to be the first club to accumulate 100 points, but Arturo Vidal, Mirko Vucinic and Sebastian Giovinco were sidelined. The Giallorossi were without Morgan De Sanctis, Kevin Strootman and Federico Balzaretti, so Lukasz Skorupski got his first Serie A start. Mattia Destro returned after a four-match ban and wanted to prove himself for a World Cup call.

There was good news before kick-off, as Roma announced they have agreed a four-year contract renewal with Miralem Pjanic.

Marco Storari was given another chance in goal and smothered a Michel Bastos snapshot, then at the other end Carlos Tevez saw his effort deflected wide.

The Giallorossi thought they had taken the lead after 16 minutes with Vasilis Torosidis on a Gervinho cross, but he handled to bundle it over the line from six yards.

Skorupski was alert to flap a dangerous Andrea Pirlo cross off the head of Fernando Llorente at the back post. Destro knocked down a ball for Francesco Totti’s fierce half-volley that Storari fingertipped out from under the bar.

Gervinho’s slide-rule pass let Destro clear on goal, but the striker’s first touch let him down one-on-one against Storari.

Llorente took advantage of a Mehdi Benatia error and stung Skorupski’s gloves at the near post with a powerful finish.

Gervinho dribbled down the right to pull back from the by-line, but it was between Destro and Totti, eventually fired over by Radja Nainggolan.

Llorente’s cushioned header was straight at the goalkeeper, then spun round to fire just over from a very tight angle.

Gervinho sprinted between centre-backs on a Pjanic through ball, but Storari made himself big to parry with one hand.

Juventus went extremely close just before half-time, as from a throw-in Paul Pogba’s angled drive surprised Skorupski to thump the base of the far post.

After the restart Bastos again tested Storari from distance, then the goalkeeper beat away a Torosidis effort and saw Destro’s follow-up deflected just wide.

Daniele De Rossi went off with a muscular problem and Giorgio Chiellini was extremely lucky to escape a red card on 58 minutes when he raised an elbow on to Pjanic’s face in the wall during a Pirlo free kick. The defender had already been carded, so at the very least it would’ve been a second yellow.

The referee did not spot that elbow, so Pjanic took revenge moments later and hacked down Chiellini for a booking.

Skorupski was again decisive on Stephan Lichtsteiner’s rising strike, though Llorente was furious he wasn’t set up in a better position.

Storari performed a fantastic double save in the closing stages, as he got down to beat away Nainggolan’s effort, then back up to deny Alessandro Florenzi’s follow-up from close range.

Just as a stalemate seemed inevitable at the Stadio Olimpico, Daniel Pablo Osvaldo popped up with the Juventus winner. Pogba rolled through for Lichtsteiner down the right and he pulled back for Osvaldo, who was unmarked and swept his finish into the far top corner with the inside of his right foot.


Roma: Skorupski; Torosidis, Benatia (Toloi 71), Castan, Bastos; Nainggolan, De Rossi (Taddei 54), Pjanic; Gervinho, Totti, Destro (Florenzi 79)
Juventus: Storari; Barzagli (Caceres 74), Bonucci, Chiellini; Lichtsteiner, Padoin (Marchisio 83), Pirlo, Pogba, Asamoah; Tevez, Llorente (Osvaldo 74)
Ref: Russo