Roma vs Inter Preview and Lineups – Serie A Round 16

Familiar foes are set to trade tackles in Saturday’s blockbuster Serie A fixture as Roma and Inter go head-to-head at the Stadio Olimpico. It will be an emotional reunion for the Giallorossi head coach Jose Mourinho, who led the Nerazzurri to the famous triplet back in 2010. 

However, things are not going Mourinho’s way of late, with Roma going into this matchday on the back of a 1-0 defeat at Bologna. Sat six points adrift of fourth-placed Atalanta ahead of the kick-off, the hosts cannot afford another lackluster display if they are to avoid falling off the top-four face early in the season.

As for Inter, a comfortable 2-0 home win over Spezia in midweek took their winning streak in Serie A to three matches. An eye-catching run of form has seen the Nerazzurri whittle down the gap on league-toppers Napoli to a mere two points, as their hopes of retaining the crown look lively again.

Roma vs Inter Head-to-Head

Since succumbing to a 3-1 defeat in February 2017, Inter have gone unbeaten in their last eight Serie A encounters against Roma, though six of them ended level (W2). The Nerazzurri drew this exact fixture 2-2 back in January before claiming a comprehensive 3-1 victory at home in May.

Indeed, a high-scoring theme has highlighted the recent Serie A match-ups between these two sides, with each of the last four seeing both teams scoring in games garnering 4+ match goals. Adding to this sentiment, the reigning Serie A holders have netted 2+ goals in four straight league visits to the Stadio Olimpico without keeping a clean sheet.

But the ‘Olimpico jinx’ has been tormenting Inter of late. They have only won one of their last 12 top-flight matches against Roma here (D6, L6), courtesy of a 3-1 success in August 2017. 

Roma Form Preview

The abovementioned reverse at Bologna clipped Roma’s wings, bringing their three-game winning run in all competitions to an end. It’s worth noting that each of their win across that period yielded a clean sheet, something the Stadio Olimpico faithful has got used to this calendar year.

Since the turn of 2021, Roma have kept a league-high ten Serie A clean sheets at home, including four in their last five league outings here. That’s the kind of statistic they’ll be looking to dwell on when they try to keep the division’s most prolific attack at bay on Saturday.

Despite carrying a reputation as a ‘park-the-bus’ manager, Mourinho has overseen his team producing the league-high 264 attempts on goal this Serie A campaign. But Roma’s players with most shots this season, Lorenzo Pellegrini (44) and Tammy Abraham (39), will remain on the sidelines to injury and suspension, respectively. 

If there’s anything meaningful to come from Roma in this fixture, it could well take place after half-time. The Giallorossi have registered a majority (62.5%) of their Serie A goals scored this season in the second half of play (15/24). 

Inter Form Preview

Following an all-important 3-2 home victory over Napoli in their first post-international break Serie A fixture, Inter have cruised to a brace of 2-0 wins over newly-promoted Venezia and 17th-placed Spezia. A couple of crushing triumphs have got their a bit slow title defense truly up and running.

However, a trip to the Stadio Olimpico won’t be a straightforward task, as evidenced by Inter’s 3-1 loss to Lazio at this venue earlier this season. Yet, Ivan Perisic’s strike in Rome back in mid-October is part of the visitors’ eye-catching run of 17 consecutive Serie A away matches in which the Nerazzurri found the net. 

Another goal against Roma would equal Inter’s club record of scoring in 18 consecutive top-flight travels, established back in 1951. It will likely go down to either Edin Dzeko or Lautaro Martinez to unlock Mourinho’s backline in the capital.

While the Bosnian could be facing his former team for the first time since swapping allegiances in the summer, the Argentine will be seeking his first-ever Serie A goal against Roma. 

Roma vs Inter Predicted Lineups

Roma (3-4-2-1): Rui Patricio; Gianluca Mancini, Chris Smalling, Roger Ibanez; Bryan Reynolds, Jordan Veretout, Amadou Diawara, Matias Vina; Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Stephen El Shaarawy; Eldor Shomurodov.

Inter (3-5-2): Samir Handanovic; Federico Dimarco, Alessandro Bastoni, Milan Skriniar; Denzel Dumfries, Nicolo Barella, Marcelo Brozovic, Hakan Calhanoglu, Ivan Perisic; Lautaro Martinez, Edin Dzeko.