Posts Tagged ‘Julio Baptista’

Sampdoria 2-2 Roma: Pazzini Illuminating Marassi, Julio Baptista Turning Its Lights Off (Serie A Matchday 28)

Sunday, March 15th, 2009

Sampdoria's forward Antonio Cassano, left, tussles with AS Roma's midfielder Marco Motta during a Serie A soccer match between Sampdoria and AS Roma at the Ferraris stadium in Genoa, Italy, Sunday, March 15, 2009. (AP Photo)

As far as entertainment goes, today’s Sampdoria vs. Roma had all the ingredients required of a soccer match: goals, cards (of various colours), and… oh yes, this is Serie A after all, reffing mistakes. For a Sunday morning, it certainly beats waking up to watch Chelsea vs. Manchester City I think… (bitter? who me?).

But in all seriousness, I got up early today primarily because I was curious on just how Spalletti would handle his injury crisis (as a Juve fan I can relate, you see…) and I have to say the Giallorossi can be pretty satisfied with their final 2-2 result, especially given the turn this game had taken after Motta’s red card. Can we talk about the “post-elimination aftershock” I was mentioning in Juve-Bologna? Partially. A draw certainly isn’t the best way to rebound from an Champions League elimination. It must also be said Roma’s roster featured nearly 1/3 of Primaveras.

Discussions aside, the match was also (very surprisingly) a game of redemption for Julio Baptista (who had been so terrible mid-week) and (less surprisingly) one of confirmation for Giampaolo Pazzini, whose entente with Cassano is screaming more and more of perfection.


Arsenal vs. Roma: The PLAYERS

Wednesday, March 11th, 2009


Continuing to surf on La Gazzetta‘s “Serie A vs. EPL” wave, here are ALL THE PLAYERS from UEFA Champions League’s Arsenal vs. Roma.


Roma 1-0 Lazio: Light at the End of the Giallorossi Tunnel? (Serie A Matchday 12)

Monday, November 17th, 2008

Derbies are always fun. No matter what the teams’ ranking, no one wants to lose them and there’s a big entertainment factor involved. For Roma however, winning this week-end’s edition of the Derby della Capitale was oh so… capital. Effectively, Julio Baptista 50th minute header brought an end to a 5-game winless streak for the Giallorossi, and offers hope to end a results crisis that Totti & friends have been dealing with for quite some time now.

As for Lazio, Delio Rossi’s squad put an end to a three-match winning streak, but did so by losing with dignity. Despite playing with one man down (after Ledesma’s red card in the 66th), the Biancocelesti held tight all the way till the end.


Bordeaux 1-3 AS Roma: Julio Baptista Time, With Birthdays and Sh** (UEFA Champions League 2008-09)

Wednesday, October 1st, 2008

Would you believe it if I told you both Roma goalscorers (Vucinic & Julio Baptista) celebrated their birthday today? Seriously, no lie! And what better gift to themselves (and Spalletti), than to carry their team to victory on Bordeaux soil after trailing by one in the first half? You just can’t make that sh** up… talk about a perfect day huh?

The Giallorossi party shouldn’t go on for too long though. Getting the first three UCL points of the season was important today, but there’s still a looooot of work to be done by Luciano Spalletti: there’s just something missing from this team (as today’s first 60 minutes demonstrated). And yes, it may be as simple as getting capitan Totti back…

If there were such things as “Man of the Half” awards, Yoann Gourcuff would get it today. The ex-Milan player, who for over a year played the inconvenient role of underachiever in Italy, seems to have been transformed since his arrival in Gironde. Manager Laurent Blanc (who knows Italian teams well, having played at Napoli and Inter Milan) essentially elected the French youngster as key playmaker today (alongside another ex-Serie A player, Fernando Menegazzo, and in support of lone striker Marouane Chamakh), and the Bordeaux midfielder executed the boss’s orders to perfection.

Present virtually everywhere on the field (including the defensive zone), Gourcuff started dishing out passes, crosses, and shots left & right. The first goal of the game in particular, was a well-executed 20m effort that caught the Roma defense unprepared and with their pants down. The kind Rossoneri supporters would like to have seen earlier last season, but which Gourcuff patiently waited until now to display. 1-0 Bordeaux.

With 30 minutes left to play in the first half, you would have thought the goal would have a kick-in-the-pants effect for Roma. Alas… not really. The only notable Giallorossi highlight in fact, was a Jon Arne Riise long-range piledriver on set pieces, that the Norwegian wing-back put narrowly wide of the Bordeaux goal. Not enough to scare the home team.

No, in fact all the “scary” stuff was left to referee Alberto Mallenco, who in minute 36 decided to send off Bordeaux’s Carlos Henrique for a elbow on Simone Perrotta. Replays showed that although the center back’s arm was directed toward Perrotta, there seemingly was no contact between the two players. Ironically though, Bordeaux came very close to increasing their lead to 2-0 and this despite their one-man disadvantage, Geraldo Wendel narrowly heading wide another good delivery by Gourcuff. 1-0 at the half.

In the second period, Spalletti sounded the charge in the changing room & on the field, replacing Ménez and Aquilani with Julio Baptista and Stefano Okaka. Roma needed to catch a break, which promptly arrived in minute 64. Anticipating both the keeper and his marker, Mirko Vucinic’s header connected with a DDR corner-kick to send the ball into the back of the Bordeaux net. 1-1, with a net shift if the match’s momentum.

Indeed, just over 5 minutes after the equalizer, Roma grabbed the lead for the first time thanks to a marvelous free-kick execution of Julio Baptista: 20m, curling shot over the wall and into the top-right corner. Totti-esque. 2-1 Roma.

Later still, the ex-Real Madrid and Arsenal player repeated himself, finalizing a beautiful Vucinic-Taddei combination and deflecting the latter’s cross into the open goal. Just minutes earlier, Okaka had blown another good opportunity in front of Valverde to make it three. 3-1 Roma.

It was the liberating goal for the Giallorossi, who could now breathe a sign of relief and enjoy their first points of the 2008-09 UCL campaign. Baptista’s and Vucinic’s night’s gonna be a long one…


 FC Girondins de Bordeaux
[Match Highlights]
A.S. Roma
GOALSCORERS: 18’ Gourcuff (B), 64’ Vucinic (R), 71’, 83’ J.Baptista (R).
BORDEAUX (4-1-4-1): Valverde – Chalmé, Henrique, Diawara, Jurietti (78’ Gouffran) – A.Diarra – Menegazzo, Obertan (40′ Planus), Gourcuff, Jussie (37′ Wendel); Chamakh. (bench: Olimpia, Ducasse, Cavenaghi, Bellion). Coach. Blanc.
ROMA (4-1-4-1): Doni – Cicinho, Mexès, Panucci, Riise – De Rossi – Taddei, Aquilani (63’ Okaka), Perrotta, Ménez (52’ J.Baptista) – Vucinic (85’ Brighi). (bench: Artur, Loria, Filipe, Montella). Coach: Spalletti.


Palermo 3-1 Roma: Miccoli and the Rosanero Fire Up Stadio Barbera (Serie A Matchday 2)

Sunday, September 14th, 2008

Who knows? Maybe Maurizio Zamparini’s never-ending “I love you… no I hate you, you’re fired” attitude might be working to some degree. The Palermo president probably surely holds he record for most manager terminations in the entire Serie A, and this season’s debut was no exception to that reputation (Stefano Colantuono’s head was the first to go on matchday 1). So, matchday 2 was the opportunity for new coach Davide Ballardini to set the record straight against Roma. Not the easiest of games mind you…

Well, it might be a bit early to say this yet, but Ballardini just might have turned this team around. Down by a goal in the first half, the Rosanero managed to find the psychological and physical resources to overcome their disadvantage, and then turn the game right on its head. O Totti where art thou?

(From Gazzetta dello Sport): As far as poker faces go, Luciano Spalletti lost his very early into the match. Indeed, Roma immediately put their cards on the table with a the very clear intention of scoring first, particularly thanks to Cicinho‘s offensive verve on the right wing. And thus, despite the many new faces compared to the Giallorossi’s “usual” line-up, it only took 8 minutes for the visitors to open the score: a De Rossi-Aquilani-Okaka-Julio Baptista combination was nicely finalized by the Brazilian “Beast”, and Roma were ahead. 1-0.

What the Giallorossi hadn’t factored in into their calculations, was Ballardini’s uncanny ability (as demonstrated in last year’s tenure with Cagliari) to turn a team’s morale inside out as if it were a freshly washed piece of laundry. The shock of conceding a goal was a fast thing to absorb for the Rosanero, who immediately started to roam forward close to Doni’s box with dangerous intentions (Simplicio, Cavani, and a Miccoli in smashing form leading the way). Cicinho’s offensive prowess was turning to be a double-edged sword for Spalletti, because the right-backs’s efficiency at covering was nowhere near as good as his contribution to the attacking effort.

As a result, it was precisely on that side that Palermo managed to break through, first through Cavani (two one-on-ones with Doni, neutralized by the Brazilian keeper) and then through Fabrizio Miccoli. On the latter chance, the ex-Juve and Benfica striker invented a beautiful dribble on the edge of the box and a smashing top-corner finish to go with it. 1-1 in great style.

Roma were really not in “it” at this point, and Daniele De Rossi’s neck injury before the break certainly didn’t do much to help the proceedings. Palermo on the other hand were galvanized by their equalizer, and their morale boost extended way into the second half (probably also thanks to the Ballardini magic half-time recipe). Fabio Liverani gave everyone the illusion of yet another goal (a great free-kick just inches wide of the post), before Fabrizio Miccoli stuck once again the dagger into Roman hearts: it was minute 56, and the “Romario del Salento” had just exploited a Simplicio steal to poke the ball under Doni’s body. 2-1 Palermo.

Roma were expected to fight back at this point. Spalletti tried alternative solutions by replacing Taddei with French (future) star Jeremy Menez. It had little or no effect. Instead, the Rosanero continued to dominate all of ball possession, offensive creativity, and yes, goals. In minute 73 and set up yet again by Fabio Simplicio, Edison Cavani put the icing on the Palermo cake by sending the ball past Doni for the third time. 3-1 and game over.

Without Mèxes, De Rossi, and Totti, there is just something missing from this “Roma Reloaded” team…


U.S. Città di Palermo
[Match Highlights]
A.S. Roma
GOALSCORERS: 8’ J.Baptista (R), 20’, 56’ Miccoli (P), 73’ Cavani (P).
PALERMO (4-3-1-2): Amelia – Cassani, Bovo, Carrozzieri, Balzaretti – Nocerino, Liverani (59’ Guana), F.Simplicio – Bresciano (84’ Migliaccio) – Miccoli (61’ Lanzafame), Cavani. (bench: Fontana, Dellafiore, Succi, Raggi). Coach: Ballardini.
ROMA (4-2-3-1): Doni – Cicinho, Loria, Panucci, Riise – De Rossi (37’ Mat.Brighi), D.Pizarro – Taddei (60’ Ménez), Aquilani, J.Baptista – Okaka (76’ Montella). (bench: Artur, Vucinic, Tonetto, Cassetti). Coach: Spalletti.