Catania - AS Roma has been suspended with 24 minutes remaining, as rain continues to gush down in eastern Sicily. The score stays at 1-1 until the final minutes are replayed, which, from the sound of it, will be either February 8 or 15.
The first half was a game of missed chances, particularly by the home side. Pablo Barrientos put his header wide, but it was Gonzalo Bergessio who really should have scored. Juan's slip on the water-logged pitch left the Catania striker clear in the box, but Simon Kjær managed a terrific goal-line clearance. On the other end, Roma had a legitimate shout for a penalty after Aleandro Rosi was dragged down in the box, but Paolo Tagliavento barely batted an eye.
Catania broke the deadlock minutes later, when Nicola Legrottaglie got his head on the end of a Francesco Lodi free kick. The ball slid off his hair and past a flat-footed Maarten Stekelenburg to give the rossazzurri a fleeting lead. Roma equalized in much the same manner, with Daniele De Rossi heading in a Francesco Totti corner.
For the final fifteen minutes of the first half, Catania rued chance after chance. Tagliavento very nearly assisted on a goal for the home side, but Roma were having none of that sort of help from the referee. Barrientos, Bergessio and Alejandro Gomez kept combining well, but just couldn't hit the high notes, with Bergessio hesitating just a second too long, arriving just an instant too late.
While rain seemed fun in the first half, creating a rather festive, fluid atmosphere, in the second it started to feel rather ominous. The ball stopped moving, the action seemed to be happening in slow-motion, and players kept skidding along the soggy pitch, picking up wedgies and who knows what other sorts of injuries. Tagliavento really had no choice but to call off the match, but you have to wonder how fair, exactly, will a 24 minute replay be -- to either side?