Roma vs Hellas Verona

It’s a new dawn at the Stadio Olimpico as out-of-sorts Roma entertain relegation-threatened Hellas Verona in their first Serie A fixture in the post-Jose Mourinho era.

Roma icon Daniele De Rossi braces for his touchline debut after taking Mourinho’s place in the dugout in the wake of last weekend’s 3-1 thumping at the hands of AC Milan. An embarrassing performance at San Siro was the final straw to break the camel’s back, condemning the Portuguese manager to another premature farewell, with ‘I Giallorossi’ stuck in the Serie A mid-table. Winless in their last three league outings (D1, L2), the troubled Rome outfit should consider themselves lucky for commencing this round only five points below fourth-placed Fiorentina. De Rossi will relish the prospect of making his managerial debut at the Stadio Olimpico, where Roma have only lost one of their ten Serie A matches this season (W6, D1).

On the other hand, visiting Hellas Verona bounced back from back-to-back league losses with a spirited 2-1 home win against fellow relegation rivals Empoli last time out to stay within striking distance of safety. With a single point separating them from 17th-placed Cagliari, the visitors take this trip on a desperate quest to defy a catastrophic away league record in 2023/24 (W1, D2, L7). But since only three Serie A sides have netted fewer goals than Verona’s seven on the road, ‘I Gialloblu’ would need a miracle to end a humiliating 26-game winless top-flight run at the Stadio Olimpico (D6, L20). Indeed, Verona’s last victory in this fixture dates back to 1973. As if that’s not ominous enough, Marco Baroni’s men are winless on their last ten competitive travels (D2, L8).

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