SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 15 - 12 Dec 2011 (19.45 UK)
Roma 1 - 1 Juventus
De Rossi 6 (R), Chiellini 61 (J)
Stadio Olimpico

Juventus fought back from an Arturo Vidal howler and saw Gigi Buffon save Francesco Totti’s penalty for a 1-1 draw at Roma.

Luis Enrique was under increasing pressure after two consecutive defeats, but also had a crisis on his hands with Bojan Krkic, Fernando Gago and Juan all suspended following their red cards against Fiorentina. They were joined by the injured Marco Cassetti, David Pizarro, Simon Kjaer, Fabio Borini and Nicolas Burdisso. Francesco Totti and Pablo Daniel Osvaldo returned, but Daniele De Rossi was re-routed into central defence for 19-year-old youth team midfielder Federico Viviani to make his debut. Juventus missed ex-Roma star Mirko Vucinic, replaced by Marcelo Estigarribia. This match was also the first ever in Serie A to be transmitted in 3D in Italy.

Roma took the lead thanks to an astonishing howler on a corner. Totti chipped a cross for De Rossi’s weak volley from nine yards, which Arturo Vidal was all ready to clear off the line, but incredibly missed and allowed it to roll meekly into the net!

Maarten Stekelenburg stuck out a hand to beat away a swerving Alessandro Matri shot, then Leonardo Bonucci’s free header was well wide.

Rodrigo Taddei copied Vidal’s fresh-air clearance, this time outside the box, and Stekelenburg rescued him with a tough save on Estigarribia. Vidal’s shot on the volley whistled past the far post, then Matri tried to go through the entire Roma defence until Gabriel Heinze eventually made a crunching tackle.

Vidal’s reverse pass released Simone Pepe, but the finish was straight at Stekelenburg. Andrea Pirlo placed a free kick beneath the wall, but without the power needed to beat the goalkeeper.

After the break a lovely Roma passing move was intercepted by a crucial Andrea Barzagli challenge to stop Osvaldo tapping in Totti’s assist.

Juventus equalised just past the hour mark, as Estigarribia’s horribly scuffed volley turned into an assist for Giorgio Chiellini’s header, as Stekelenburg had come tearing off his line.

However, 55 seconds later Vidal went in with a sliding tackle on Lamela to give away a penalty. Roma had the chance to restore their lead straight away, but Gigi Buffon did brilliantly to save Totti’s penalty.

Jose Angel crucially held off Pepe to stop a very dangerous counter in the box, while Miralem Pjanic went off suffering from dizziness. Osvaldo’s chip was off target and Fabio Quagliarella hit a weak effort straight at Stekelenburg. Stephan Lichtsteiner finished off a good passing move by striking the side-netting.

Fabio Simplicio wasted a golden opportunity by chipping into Buffon’s arms when Totti was unmarked in front of an open goal. At the other end, Quagliarella had a similar error when running on to Eljero Elia’s through ball.


Roma: Stekelenburg; Taddei, De Rossi, Heinze, Jose Angel; Pjanic (Perrotta 74), Viviani (Simplicio 58), Greco; Lamela, Totti, Osvaldo (Borriello 86)
Juventus: Buffon; Lichtsteiner, Barzagli, Bonucci, Chiellini; Vidal, Pirlo, Marchisio; Estigarribia (Giaccherini 72), Matri (Quagliarella 67), Pepe (Elia 86)
Ref: Orsato

Saved penalty: Totti 63 (R)