Roma vs Juventus Preview and Lineups – Serie A Round 21

Famed Stadio Olimpico plays host to Sunday’s mouth-watering Serie A encounter between Roma and Juventus. This tasty-looking showdown between the two Italian powerhouses would have a substantial bearing on the usual title race. 

However, both sides have fallen from grace, with any realistic chances of hauling down significant gaps on pacesetters Inter long gone. Back to the realm of possibility, Roma and Juventus both harbour genuine hopes of pulling off a coveted top-four finish despite a quite underwhelming first half of the season.

The Giallorossi might have closed 2021 out on a three-game unbeaten Serie A streak (W2, D1), but a disappointing 3-1 away defeat to Milan in their opening league game of 2022 smacked Jose Mourinho’s side back to reality. 

In the meantime, the Bianconeri picked themselves up from a 1-0 half-time deficit to hold Napoli to a hard-fought 1-1 home draw last time out, courtesy of Federico Chiesa’s 54th-minute equaliser. Now unbeaten in six Serie A games on the trot (W4, D2), the record-time Italian champions sit only three points adrift of fourth-placed Atalanta. 

Roma vs Juventus Head-to-Head

Moise Kean’s 16th-minute header in the reverse fixture at the Allianz Stadium made the difference between the sides, helping Juventus maintain a stranglehold on Roma. 

After making it 12 victories in their last 13 home matches against La Lupa, the Turin-based heavyweights have set their sights on completing their first top-flight double over this opposition since 2013/14. 

Home and away, the Bianconeri have inflicted more Serie A defeats on Roma (84) than any other side in the competition’s history. Moreover, only Inter (287) have scored more top-flight goals against the Giallorossi than Juventus (270) thus far. 

That said, Jose Mourinho’s men have won three of their last six home league encounters against Juve (D2, L1), achieving the second-most home victories over this opposition since 2015/16. 

Roma Form Preview

The Giallorossi have been the epitome of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, depending on the turf they are playing on under Mourinho’s stewardship. Only two (25%) of Roma’s eight Serie A defeats this season have come at the Stadio Olimpico, though those failures have arrived in their last five games in the capital (W2, D1).

In the absence of the bounce-back ability, scoring first would significantly optimise Roma’s chances of beating fierce rivals in front of attending home fans. Mourinho’s men have suffered eight losses from nine Serie A matches when conceding the opening goal this season (W1). 

Against this backdrop, two of Mourinho’s four managerial triumphs against Juventus have seen his side come from behind to seal the three points. But Roma may not have to worry so much about keeping it tight at the back, considering no other Serie A side have kept more clean sheets in home league games than them (five) this season. 

Juventus Form Preview

Despite enjoying an ongoing run of six Serie A matches without losing, Juventus are steadily building a reputation as the ‘entertainment killers.’ While each of their four victories during that six-game sequence came by an identical 2-0 scoreline, none of their last nine league fixtures have featured more than two goals. 

That’s hardly going to upset head coach Massimiliano Allegri, whose only goal is to navigate his side through to next season’s Champions League group stage. The Italian manager can call upon Juventus’ four-game unbeaten Serie A streak away from home (W3, D1), with each of those three wins – guess what – yielding the same 2-0 scoreline. 

There is another good omen here, as Allegri has gone undefeated in three of his five Serie A managerial H2Hs with his Roma counterpart (W2, D1), beating Mourinho on more occasions than any other manager in the competition’s history. 

A lack of firepower up front remains a glaring issue, though, with Juventus scoring just 28 Serie A goals this season. They last netted fewer goals at this stage of the season in 1999/2000, highlighting the club’s inability to replace Cristiano Ronaldo. 

Roma vs Juventus Predicted Line-ups

Roma (3-5-2): Rui Patricio; Marash Kumbulla, Chris Smalling, Roger Ibanez; Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Jordan Veretout, Bryan Cristante, Lorenzo Pellegrini, Matias Vina; Nicolo Zaniolo, Tammy Abraham.

Juventus (4-3-3): Wojciech Szczesny; Juan Cuadrado, Giorgio Chiellini, Matthijs de Ligt, Alex Sandro; Rodrigo Bentancur, Manuel Locatelli, Weston McKennie; Federico Bernardeschi, Alvaro Morata, Federico Chiesa.