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18 December, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Napoli keep pace with Juventus

Afp, Milan

 

Roma battled back for a 3-2 Serie A victory over Genoa to give beleaguered coach Eusebio Di Francesco a lifeline at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday despite goalkeeper Robin Olsen’s early blunder.

It ended Roma’s five-match winless streak dating back to a 4-1 triumph over Sampdoria on November 11, and lifted Di Francesco’s side to sixth -- two points behind AC Milan in the final Champions League berth.

Napoli earlier beat Cagliari 1-0 in Sardinia to pull back to within eight points of leaders Juventus, who won their derby against Torino by the same scoreline on Saturday thanks to a Cristiano Ronaldo penalty.

Roma got off to the worst possible start in a tense atmosphere among the 29,000 crowd in Rome where fans had a silent protest in the first ten minutes at the club’s management and transfer strategy.

“I have to congratulate the lads for how they played in a very surreal environment, for them it was not easy,” said Di Francesco.

“The team is still sick, but I saw the pride and the desire to bring home the three points.”

The hosts were trailing after Swedish keeper Olsen let the ball slip through his legs and hands to allow Polish striker Krzysztof Piatek pounce in the 17th minute.

Piatek slid in for his 12th goal of the season to overtake Ronaldo as Serie A’s leading scorer.

But goals from Federico Fazio and Justin Kluivert twice pulled Roma level before the break, with Bryan Cristante grabbing the winner just before the hour mark.

Di Francesco was reported to be set for the axe if his team failed to deliver a win against Genoa, who are now 16th.

And amid an injury crisis, the 49-year-old switched things around after his side’s Champions League defeat midweek with Nicolo Zaniolo in a new attacking role.

“I chose above all players who were fresh, young and free of the pressure,” said Di Francesco.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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