HomeFootballHow Daniele de Rossi has rejuvenated Roma

How Daniele de Rossi has rejuvenated Roma


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After hiring former club captain Daniele De Rossi as the club’s manager in January, fans remained angry following the dismissal of Jose Mourinho, who had guided them to two consecutive European finals. This has all been very quickly forgotten, as Roma trounced Brighton and Hove Albion 4-0 at the Stadio Olimpico yesterday.

De Rossi was expected to just steady the ship for the Giallorossi until the end of the season – however he has exceeded all expectations and guided them to seven wins in nine. Following the transformation of Roma, it has been reported that they are looking to extend the Italian’s contract.

His only previous experience was at SPAL in the Serie B where he was sacked after winning just three in 17 matches. The Roma board took a risk, but have been rewarded as they have climbed four places in the table since the arrival of De Rossi.

He came in and straightawaysaid that he wants to “control the ball and dominate the game”. That is a very different plan and style to what his predecessor had set before him.

The change of formation to a hybrid 4-3-3 and slightly less structure has given the team in the capital a chance at Champions League football this season. A competition they haven’t qualified for since 2018/19.

A major factor to De Rossi’s current success is down to the way he has unlocked Paulo Dybala. The Argentinian has been deployed in a free role for the Italian side in the last two months.

Although on paper he starts on the right, he has the freedom to drift where he wants and often drops deep to create and likes to play in the half spaces.

In the nine games since the new manager has been there, Dybala has seven goals and an assist. He averages a goal or assist every 79 minutes.

This flexibility has given us glimpses of the Dybala that we saw at Juventus, he thrives on being the ‘main man’.

Leandro Paredes is another player who has been given more responsibility in this new look Roma side. He has become the focal point of the midfield and De Rossi has been trying to mould Paredes into his former self according to La Gazzetta dello Sport.

And is described as a ‘deep lying playmaker who is meant to accelerate the overall rhythm and tempo of the team’s style of play’.

Paredes is often partnered in a pivot with Bryan Cristante or Edoardo Bove, this gives Lorenzo Pellegrini (deployed left of midfield three) freedom to roam out wide where he helps support Stephan El Shaarawy. Cristante has often been given the freedom to venture forward, as evident from his goal against the Seagulls yesterday.

Consequently, due to these tactical adjustments, Roma’s average goals per game under De Rossi now stands at 2.4, compared to just 1.5 goals per game under Mourinho. And against Brighton, they showed how good they are at pressing man-to-man, while having previously pressed in different ways. Their build-up structure is also process driven, as they look to build with a back-three in the first phase with one full-back staying deep but things adapt depending on the opposition.

As well as this, they are currently third in the form table with only one defeat in their last six – which was Inter under the new boss, who are in a rich vein of form themselves.

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