SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 3 - 24 Jan 2018 (19.45 UK)
Sampdoria 1 - 1 Roma
Quagliarella pen 45 (S), Dzeko 91 (R)
Stadio Luigi Ferraris

Edin Dzeko nodded in an equaliser deep into stoppages, as Roma snatched a 1-1 draw away to Sampdoria in this rescheduled match.

This fixture was originally cancelled on September 9 due to weather warnings in Genoa. A win would take the Giallorossi joint fourth with Inter, while Samp were hoping to close the gap on Roma to just four points.

Dzeko was in the starting XI despite strong reports of an imminent move to Chelsea, but Stephan El Shaarawy, Diego Perotti, Maxime Gonalons, Daniele De Rossi and Rick Karsdorp were out injured. Samp had a full squad to choose from, including Fabio Quagliarella, who had already set a new personal best of 15 Serie A goals.

Dzeko had a chance to score in the opening couple of minutes, but scuffed his finish on a Cengiz Under assist from seven yards. Ferrari then flung himself in the Bosnian’s path to stop the shot on a Radja Nainggolan pull-back, but Federico Fazio did the same on Karol Linetty from a Duvan Zapata assist.

Lorenzo Pellegrini’s snapshot from distance stung Emiliano Viviano’s gloves, but the goalkeeper then stuck out a foot to deny Nainggolan from point-blank range at the end of a good team move.

Kostas Manolas turned a free header over from Pellegrini’s free kick, then Gregoire Defrel went clear on a Dzeko through ball only to balloon over the bar, although the horrible state of the pitch might’ve been a factor.

Aleksandar Kolarov clumsily flung himself at a cross and only a couple of minutes later did the referee view it on VAR, assigning a penalty for handball. Roma were furious, as they felt there was a foul on Kevin Strootman in the build-up. Alisson guessed the right side, but Quagliarella’s spot-kick was so precise into the near bottom corner that it could not be kept out.

Straight after the restart, Duvan Zapata blasted over from 10 yards and Quagliarella limped off clutching the back of his thigh.

Alisson flew to fingertip a magnificent Gianluca Caprari free kick out of the near top corner and it’s difficult to see how he could’ve hit that much sweeter.

Pellegrini’s angled drive whistled off target and Dzeko had the ball in the back of the net on 67 minutes, but only after the offside flag had been raised.

Dzeko completely misread a dangerous Alessandro Florenzi cross, both failing to turn in and doing just enough to stop substitute Mirko Antonucci from getting the decisive touch at the back post.

A corner was knocked on to Caprari, who somehow blasted over on the half-volley moments later. Dennis Praet limped off with a suspected thigh strain, as he over-stretched and immediately pulled up clutching the back of his thigh.

Alisson came to the rescue again, using his leg to parry after a smart double give-and-go between Caprari and Lucas Torreira.

Florenzi thought he had equalised on 87 minutes with a stunning volley from a tight angle, but it was deflected inches past the far post.

Roma did get back on level terms in stoppages, as teenage substitute Antonucci put in a marvellous cross from the left that Dzeko nodded in from close range.

Samp had two free kicks right on the edge of the box in injury time, but one went into the wall, the other was over the bar.

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Sampdoria: Viviano; Bereszynski, Silvestre, Ferrari, Strinic (Murru 74); Praet (Barreto 80), Torreira, Linetty; Ramirez; Duvan Zapata, Quagliarella (Caprari 51)
Roma: Alisson; Florenzi, Manolas, Fazio, Kolarov; Pellegrini (Gerson 80), Strootman, Nainggolan; Defrel (Schick 64), Dzeko, Cengiz Under (Antonucci 74)
Ref: Orsato