First Practices Offer Glimpes of the New-Look Roma

Daniele De Rossi has directed his first training sessions, which provided a hint about which direction Roma will go next tactically. However, his first XI will be peculiar. Bryan Cristante and Gianluca Mancini will both be out due to yellow-card accumulation.

According to Corriere dello Sport, the new gaffer will likely use a four-man defense against Verona. On top of the suspended duo, Evan N’Dicka is away for AFCON and Marash Kumbulla isn’t ready to start. Chris Smalling isn’t healthy.

De Rossi tested 4-3-3 and 4-2-3-1 in his first Roma practices. The only center-backs left are Diego Llorente and Dean Huijsen. Rasmus Kristensen adapted to the role in the final matches with José Mourinho at the helm. Paulo Dybala was a full-go. He will be available after missing the previous tilt.

La Joya could move a few meters back and operate as a no.10. The different formation could lead to more minutes for those who had fallen out of favor or weren’t totally comfortable in the previous one, such as Rick Karsdorp, Leonardo Spinazzola, or Stephan El Shaarawy.

De Rossi used 3-4-2-1 and 3-5-2 with SPAL and might stick to those too once the Roma squad is whole. A possible tweak could be fielding Dybala along with two pure strikers. In the meantime, Smalling has broken his silence after months, stating on Instagram that he never thought about leaving and dismissing some rumors about his rehab, such as his aversion to surgery or painkillers (via The Daily Mail).

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