Exactly two months ago, the 22nd round match between AS Roma and Parma was suspended after ten minutes due to the waterlogged pitch at the Olimpico. Now, the match carries even more importance for both sides. Roma are still dreaming of a highly unlikely, but still theoretically possible, scudetto. More realistically, the lupi want to secure second place, with Napoli six points behind. Parma's 17 game unbeaten run ended two weeks ago with a loss to Juventus, which they followed with another loss, to Lazio. But Roberto Donadoni's side is still looking to bring European football back to the Ennio Tardini and getting at least a point against Roma would be a fantastic result.
That might prove impossible, though, with two of Parma's most important players, Gabriel Paletta and Antonio Cassano, out injured.. Paletta's performances this season are the major reason Parma have done so well defensively, and without him in the lineup last week, Lazio were able to score three goals. Cassano, at age 31, is having one of the best seasons of his career, having scored eleven goals thus far. His flair will be missed up front, but it's doubtful that Parma's approach to the game will change much in absence of FantAntonio:. Solid and disciplined at the back, trying to hurt Roma on the break.
Rudi Garcia remains hopeful about the title. While the scudetto will almost certainly remain nothing more than a dream for the giallorossi this season, it does keep the players hungry for success andthat shows on the pitch. Even if Roma haven't been as brilliant recently as at the beginning of the season, they're still managing to win most of their games. Radja Nainggolan has stepped up in Kevin Strootman's absence, but he's unavailable for this match, so Garcia will rely on veteran Rodrigo Taddei. Up front it will be Mattia Destro, injured much of the season yet with ten goals to his name, including four in Roma's last four games - all wins for the lupi.
Parma's only win at the Olimpico dates back to almost exactly 17 years ago. It's hard to imagine today will bring their second, considering the players missing for Parma, and the recent form of both sides.
Roma injuries and suspensions
Federico Balzaretti, Kevin Strootman (injuried); Radja Nainggolan (suspended)
Parma injuries and suspensions
Projected line ups
Parma (3-5-2): Antonio Mirante; Mattia Cassani, Jonathan Rossini, Alessandro Lucarelli, Cristian Molinaro; Afriyie Acquah, Marco Marchionni, Marco Parolo; Jonathan Biabiany, Amauri, Ezequiel Schelotto
Wednesday, April 2nd, 6:30 p.m. local, 12:30 p.m. ET
Stadio Olimpico, Rome
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