Vincenzo Italaino’s Special Stuff
Regardless of the circumstances, Fiorentina pulling off the upset against Roma in Firenza it’s clear something special is happening. Fiorentina has gone through a lengthy transition in the last year-and-a-half with a lot of moving parts. Fiorentina has been the most overhyped team in Italian football over the last three or four years. Their big mouth president Rocco commisso had continued to claim that the viola has what it takes to make Champions League football. He has hype them up every season and they have faltered under those expectations and the narrative that Rocco commisso has painted for his Fiorentina side. Last season they sold Federico Chiesa to Juventus and even though Fiorentina has a talented Squad top to bottom they didn’t really surround themselves in the right way as they have continually let themselves down in regards to transfer signings and management decisions. At least until now. Rocco commisso someone looked into the situation that Fiorentina is operating under. They had appointed Gattuso at the beginning of the summer however the difference in vision caused the former AC Milan and Napoli manager to resign before he could sit one game on the sideline with Fiorentina. There’s no doubt that he might have done a good job in Florence this season but it never felt like a move that was going to take the next step and get them into Europe. The deal fell through his second and third choices were Ivan juric one of the managers of the season that is guiding a very average Torino into the top 10 and Roberto DeZerbi that opted for the Shakhtar Donetsk job. Vincenzo Italiano was not one of his top three choices you could say that he walked into this everything happens for a reason and this certainly in hindsight seems like it was a blessing. Vincenzo Italiano guided Spezia to promotion and then safety. He was also linked with the Lazio job but they opted for Maurizio sarri. Vincenzo Italiano seems to be nobody’s first choice. Its a very fascinating thing because he did a tremendous job with an incredibly average Spezia that simply is not the same without him. The Fiorentina a gig falls into his lap as he takes advantage of the opportunity. He has built something incredibly special in Florence with Fiorentina. He has taken them to a place that they’ve had Ambitions to go for many years. All of a sudden Fiorentina are going to be a European team next season. Whether it’s the conference League or the Europa League I fully believe that they will find their way into Europe. He brought in Nico Gonzalez, Lucas Torreira, Arthur, Jonathan Ikone and so many others. They were Big Spenders specifically in January as he had to deal with the drama of Duzan Vladovic departing for Juventus. He has kept them at a good Pace all season as they continue to close in on European football. There is a completely different type of energy from this team that we haven’t seen in a long time. The emotional relationship he has with the club and the supporters has only egg them on to finally prove themselves as a team that can push for Europe they are a difficult matchup for anyone because of the influence he has had. There were circumstances that led to their victory on Monday however performing the way they did against a team like Roma is incredibly special. They are on level points with both Roma and Lazio most likely the two Rome clubs finish in the Europa League spots but one way or another this Fiorentina team will find a way in Europe Vincenzo Italiano is the orchestrator behind this Florentina team finally showing their qualities he’s done this with a superstar and without one of the managers of the Season without question.
Top 5 No longer in Roma’s Hands
Roma in a matter of weeks has allowed their Europa League status to slip out of their hands. Not long ago it looks like they were going to get to a final and finish in the top five now one of those things is in jeopardy. After the horrific penalty call that was given against him against Fiorentina, they never look the same. As fans and supporters, we are allowed to be angry and be affected by a decision like that. As players, once the moment is over once has passed it’s their responsibility to refocus themselves and take the momentum back. The penalty in question took place in the fifth minute Roma had upwards of 85 minutes to turn it around and win the game. They were agitated and frustrated and they let it affect their play. Fiorentina got themselves a second and never was in threat of losing the game again. The performance simply hasn’t been good enough in the games against Bologna and Fiorentina. Could have been 6 points instead Rama getting one. Have they gotten the six points they would be firmly in control in the top five that’s no longer the case. Considering how much better Roma has been collectively this season than Lazio finishing ahead of them now seems doubtful. Roma, Lazio, Atalanta, and Fiorentina all have the same amount of points meaning Roma could fall out of the Europa League altogether. They will still probably qualify if they win the conference League but anything below a top-six finish would be a disaster and at this point not finishing in the top five would be a huge disappointment. Roma has put themselves in a must-win situation and the remaining two games that they have. One slip-up could be very costly. Roma really mismanaged themselves over the last two games. However, their Europa League status still should be something they should be optimistic about. They have Venecia at home at the Stadio Olimpico Saturday. I understand Rome is not playing very well and they’re trying to fight for their lives even if they beat them the first time Roma after the last two performances will be motivated and understand what’s at stake. The last day of the season will be a trip to the Stadio Grande Torino to take on Ivan juric Torino which is a little unsettling. However, Lazio takes on Juventus this weekend and Atalanta takes on AC Milan. Fiorentina on Monday night will take on Sampdoria at the Luigi Ferraris it could be tricky. However, Roma have only themselves to blame to be in this situation they have put things out of their control and now have to win their final two games of the season they must finish in the top six at the very least but still should have their eyes on top five they severely let themselves down Monday.
There’s no doubt in my mind that Fiorentina deserved their points on Monday night. Roma didn’t put their best foot forward their performance lacked creativity they very rarely put themselves in a position to get back in the game. There’s no excuse for their performance however a potential match-defining call just minutes into the game demoralized the entire team and they never fully recovered. Again I want to make it clear I am not suggesting that if things had gone differently in regards to the penalty in question that they should have won the game they didn’t deserve a thing it performance was brutal to watch. However, we can’t ignore the gigantic error that was made in the opening minutes of this game. We don’t know how the rest of the game would have unraveled if it was called a different way. We have to remember this isn’t Florence their fans were going crazy it was quite an atmosphere a difficult place to play by itself when something so blatantly goes against you hard to ReDiscover that momentum and confidence. We can say that Fiorentina deserves to win the game but we also can say that the penalty call in the fifth minute could have affected if the final scoreline. As a romanista, I very rarely bring up the official even if something was horribly called against Roma. My thought process is if Roma played poorly they don’t deserve to win so those types of situations become irrelevant. However, the gravity of the situation was the fact that it happened so early in the game. This wasn’t a quote-on-quote soft penalty this is my issue with this it wasn’t a penalty at all. In fact, you could argue it should have been a Yellow Card on Fiorentina instead. Gonzalez looking for space is pressurized by a Defender from outside the box he gets inside the box and falls to the floor. In what looks like a total dive again it is possible that he was moving so quickly that the motion brought to the ground. Rick karsdorp made no contact with Gonzales Inside the Box. He didn’t touch the ball and the only contact made between them was something that Gonzales initiated. It went into video review they called it a penalty. It is a significant judgment call to call is that a penalty at that moment so early in it. Roma can’t make excuses for themselves their performance wasn’t good enough but to make that call so early in a game in that atmosphere could have completely changed the outcome of the game. If Roma had played like that and the penalty wasn’t called they still would have deserved to lose but my issue is the lack of consistency from the referee. That is probably a yellow card again that isn’t a soft penalty it is not a penalty in the slightest watching that playback there’s not even a single argument you can make to say that it was. Referees can make bad decisions and I understand that it is a very difficult job to do they can make mistakes. The problem is the game was not being called down the middle. If you’re going to be giving that as a penalty then you have to give anything soft under the rules could be a penalty as a spot-kick. Just a few minutes later as Amrabat forward as the ball touches right underneath the shoulder. Not something I would call but considering what was just caused 3 minutes earlier. As a referee, you have to have a civic duty of not showing any favoritism and calling it equally for both teams. Countless times on Monday in which Roma was not given the call. Pellegrini getting dragged to the ground with the defender tugging on his shirt as he’s trying to move; Nicola Zalewski facing a very dangerous tackle not only not given a yellow card but not even called as a foul I could name several more instances in regards to that. In a game like this with so much on the line for him to make a decision based on nothing took the momentum out of Roma, they were never going to recover from that because it wasn’t a penalty if it was a soft penalty nobody’s complaining right now it is the timing of the call and the severity of the call that changed the game for Roma Fiorentina probably would have still on the game but the officiating was arrogant if you’re not going to call it down the line we’re going to have a problem because that is the simple of requests as I described in my previous paragraph Romans performance is unacceptable and should have put together a better performance considering the importance of the game but the penalty given an assessment of that game was a dive the way this game was officiated was unacceptable regardless of the result.