Three takeaways from Hellas Verona 2-1 AS Roma: New strikers arriving just in time, Rui Patricio’s alarming decline

The decline of Rui Patricio has proved costly for AS Roma once more, whilst the Giallorossi are desperately waiting to bring in new strikers as their poor start in Serie A continues.


AS Roma were left stunned as they fell to a 2-1 defeat to Hellas Verona at the Stadio Marcantonio Bentegodi in Matchday 2 of Serie A, despite the hosts finishing the game with 10 men.

The Giallorossi were trailing after just four minutes and went into the break two goals down, with a magnificent Cyril Ngonge solo effort punishing the capital club after Ondrej Duda‘s early strike.

Despite a Houssem Aouar header and a red card for Verona defender Isak Hien, Jose Mourinho‘s side could not snatch an equaliser and have picked up just a single point from their first two games.

AS Roma midfielder Houssem Aouar scored against Hellas Verona (@ASRomaEN)

New additions can’t come soon enough for AS Roma

Roma have seen a sudden surge in activity in the transfer market after a quiet and frustrating summer, with midfielders Leandro Paredes and Renato Sanches joining in the past fortnight.

Paredes started against Verona, whilst Sanches was not fit enough to feature, but it is the attacking positions that have become the focus and the Lupi are crying out for more options up front.

Sardar Azmoun poses with Tiago Pinto after joining AS Roma. [@OfficialASRoma]

Iran international Sardar Azmoun was confirmed as a new signing on loan from Bayer Leverkusen before kick off, whilst former Inter striker Romelu Lukaku is expected to arrive on a temporary deal from Chelsea.

With Andrea Belotti toiling but rarely threatening, and nobody able to relieve the ex-Torino captain from the bench as he tired, Mourinho will be delighted to have two new attackers to turn to in the coming days. The lacklustre display in Verona is proof that Azmoun and Lukaku are in desperate need.

Rui Patricio fumbles are holding Roma back

It is still early in the season, but the doubts about the long-term viability of Rui Patricio in goal for Roma are mounting. The Portugal international was at fault for the early opener after parrying a long shot into the path of Duda to tap in, and put his side on the back front from the off.

Patricio did not cover himself in glory during Roma’s 2-2 draw against Salernitana in Matchday 1 and his form has wavered for some time now, with the veteran unreliable and a cause for concern for Mourinho.

The Giallorossi have Serbian starlet Mile Svilar on their books after snatching him from Benfica and he cannot be far off breaking into the first time. Whilst much of the attention this summer has been on securing a new striker to replace the injured Tammy Abraham, perhaps the capital club ought to have taken a second look at a goalkeeper too.

AS Roma coach Jose Mourinho and goalkeeper Rui Patricio (@OfficialASRoma)

Verona transformed under Baroni

Verona only remained in Serie A by the skin of their teeth last season, with a playoff against Spezia required to preserve their top-flight status. Since then, the club have worked hard to learn their lessons, and it has paid off handsomely so far this term.

In Marco Baroni, they have a forward-thinking and disciplined coach who kept Lecce up at the first attempt last year, whilst a porous defence appears to have been fixed up.

Indeed, the Gialloblu were organised and well-structured to deny Roma and with two wins from their opening matches, are showing signs of being able to enjoy a more comfortable season this time around.


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