Cengiz Under hit another screamer for his fourth goal in three games, giving Roma another hard-fought 2-0 win away to Udinese.
The Friulani were transformed since Massimo Oddo took over and welcomed back Ali Adnan after two months, but Stipe Perica stepped in for injured Kevin Lasagna. The Giallorossi had Daniele De Rossi, Radja Nainggolan and Lorenzo Pellegrini returning to the starting XI, resting Aleksandar Kolarov and Diego Perotti for the Champions League clash with Shakhtar Donetsk.
Roma have now won the last 10 head to head games with Udinese in Serie A, last stalling in a 1-1 draw here in March 2013. Their most recent defeat on Friuli soil was 2-0 all the way back in November 2011.
It was a frantic start at the Dacia Arena with chances at both ends, as Cengiz Under overcooked the move a bit with his footwork for a shot deflected wide, then Alisson came flying out to clear after Perica pounced on an awful Juan Jesus back-pass.
VAR was used to rule Ali Adnan was too close to Cengiz Under for it to qualify as intentional handball, especially as the arm was across his chest.
Alisson showed Brazilian footwork to dribble away from Perica as last man in midfield with a Cruyff Turn, then Cengiz Under stung Albano Bizzarri’s gloves.
Seko Fofana skimmed the woodwork with a scorcher from distance, as did Stephan El Shaarawy moments later from the edge of the box.
Under rolled a great ball across the face of goal only for nobody to meet it. After the restart, the Roma defence was caught out by a throw-in and Alisson was again decisive to deny Perica from point-blank range.
Dzeko went on a mazy run through defenders only to hit the side-netting, but the deadlock was again broken by Cengiz Under with his fourth goal in three games. It was a left-foot missile from 20 metres with a wicked bend to take it just beyond Bizzarri into the far bottom corner.
Perica sprung the offside trap, forcing Federico Fazio into a decisive tackle in the box, then Kevin Strootman gave the ball away for Alisson to deny Rodrigo De Paul at the near post.
In stoppages, Seko Fofana was caught in possession and Perotti sent clear to score from a tight angle, one-on-one with Bizzarri. It was the Argentina international’s first goal since November and Roma's third consecutive victory.
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