Bologna have taken a 2-1 half-time lead away to Roma and it could’ve been even more, as the Giallorossi crisis continues.
The Giallorossi were smarting after three defeats in their last five Serie A games, with Lorenzo Pellegrini suspended, Nicolò Zaniolo, Amadou Diawara and Davide Zappacosta injured. Henrikh Mkhitaryan returned from the start after a long lay-off, with Diego Perotti preferred to Justin Kluivert and Aleksandar Kolarov at left-back. The visitors had Andrea Poli banned, Federico Santander, Nicola Sansone, Gary Medel, Ladislav Krejci and Mitchell Dijks injured, so Musa Barrow got his first start.
Sinisa Mihajlovic was released from hospital that morning after anti-viral treatment, but travelled straight to Rome so he could sit on the bench.
It was an aggressive start from the visitors and Chris Smalling had to charge down a Riccardo Orsolini effort set up by Rodrigo Palacio.
However, Smalling was caught out when Barrow’s cross off the outside of the boot rolled beyond Palacio and found Orsolini to tap in at the far post. It had been coming, as Bologna had the better of the game until that point.
Roma tried to reply straight away, but Stefano Denswil did enough to put Edin Dzeko off, then Jerzy Schouten should’ve made it 2-0 when blasting over from seven yards.
The equaliser was a stroke of luck for the Giallorossi, as Aleksandar Kolarov’s low cross slipped under Dzeko’s foot and Denswil accidentally bundled it over his own line when attempting to anticipate Cengiz Under.
It was wide open and Barrow restored Bologna’s lead when his curler from just inside the box took a deflection off Davide Santon’s shin to loop beyond Pau Lopez into the far top corner.
This was the first time since March 2005 that Roma had conceded two goals in the first half of back-to-back Serie A games.
Mattias Svanberg curled wide from a very promising position, then Schouten sent Palacio clear down the right, forcing a save at the base of the near post.
Roma 1-2 Bologna (Half-Time)
Orsolini 16 (B), Denswil og 22 (R), Barrow 26 (B)
Roma:Pau Lopez; Santon, Mancini, Smalling, Kolarov; Veretout, Cristante; Under, Mkhitaryan, Perotti; Dzeko
Bologna:Skorupski; Tomiyasu, Danilo, Bani, Denswil; Svanberg, Schouten, Soriano; Orsolini, Palacio, Barrow
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