Roma Player Ratings vs Spezia: Abraham Back to the Scoresheet

Roma scored on either side of halftime to beat in-form Spezia 2-0 at the Stadio Alberto Picco and reinforce their Serie A top-four hopes. It wasn’t a pleasant evening for the Giallorossi, but they claimed an all-important three points in good old ‘Jose Mourinho’ fashion. 

It took Roma 45 minutes to make a breakthrough. Paulo Dybala picked Stephan El Shaarawy out with an inch-perfect through ball as Mourinho’s side broke the deadlock on the stroke of halftime. Despite failing to create many clear-cut chances, the visitors made every one of those they had count.

Only four minutes into the second half, Tammy Abraham scored for the second time in his third Serie A start in 2023 with a brilliant solo goal. The English striker nutmegged Mattia Caldara to put himself one-on-one with Spezia goalkeeper Bartlomiej Dragowski, who stood no chance whatsoever. 

In addition to maintaining an almost perfect four-game Serie A start to the new calendar year (W3, D1), Roma have leapfrogged city rivals Lazio into fourth, at least temporarily. In such a buoyant mood, Mourinho’s men can dream big ahead of their mouth-watering trip to southern Italy to meet pacesetters Napoli in the next round.

Roma (3-4-2-1)

Rui Patricio – 6

It’s impossible to rate a keeper who didn’t face a single shot toward his goal, yet the veteran was composed the whole evening. 

Chris Smalling – 7

Won virtually every aerial duel against Emmanuel Gyasi and established himself as a force to be reckoned with throughout the night. 

Roger Ibanez – 6.5

Playing alongside Smalling made his life a lot easier, yet the Brazilian held up his end of the bargaining, helping Rui Patricio stroll through the night. 

Gianluca Mancini – 7

Always looked in control against what was a thoroughly uneventful Spezia attack and unleashed a long ball that led to Roma’s opener. 

Nicola Zalewski – 5.5

Lucky to get away without punishment after trying to draw a penalty with some second-grade acting skills. Decent at the back but failed to do anything worth mentioning up top. 

Nemanja Matic – 7

The experienced midfielder excelled in his rare Serie A start. His defensive positioning was spot on, while he barely gave the ball away when in possession. 

Bryan Cristante – 6.5

Although his defending sometimes left a lot to be desired, he made up for it by taking over Lorenzo Pellegrini’s duties of dictating the pace of the game with metronomic precision. 

Zeki Celik – 6

Provided an effective overlapping option on the right-hand side but picked up a cheap booking that will suspend him for Roma’s trip to Napoli next week.

Stephan El Shaarawy – 7

Scored a much-needed opening goal with the easiest of tap-ins but sprinted down the middle to find himself in tha position. But often struggled to win one-on-one duels against his markers.

Paulo Dybala – 7

Not on the scoresheet this time around, but still chipped in with a vital assist for El Shaarawy. There’s a feeling he always knows what to do with the ball.

Tammy Abraham – 7.5

Nailed the final nail in Spezia’s coffin with a stunning solo goal and made his all-action presence too hot to handle for the home team’s backline from the get-go. 

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