AS Roma have qualified for the quarterfinals of the UEFA Conference League after playing a 1-1 draw against Vitesse.
After winning the first leg 1-0 in the Netherlands, Roma played 1-1 in the return leg. All thanks to Tammy Abraham’s header that helped the Gialorossi.
Roma made a worrying start to the game. In just three minutes, a long-distance free-kick from Adrian Grbic saw Rui Patricio flap it out from under the bar.
Roma finally settled as Jordan Veretout’s shot from outside the box, and Matias Vina hit a scorcher that skimmed the far post from distance.
Lorenzo Pellegrini’s free-kick from a long way out failed to hit the target.
The visitors then went into the driving seat by the first bit of quality in the entire match.
A ferocious volley from Maximilian Wittek hit in 20 metres with the outside of his left boot swinging outwards and into the near bottom corner beyond Rui Patricio.
In the search for an equaliser, Bryan Cristante forced a save at the near post on a Pellegrini free kick. Pellegrini’s acrobatic volley over from 10 yards on a Tammy Abraham knock-down couldn’t find the net.
Grbic had a promising opportunity to put Vitesse 2-0 up, but he scuffled the angled drive wide when sent clear by Openda.
With the game at 1-1, the tie was heading to extra time until the final minute when Roma snatched an equaliser, which proved to be the winning goal on aggregate. Stephan El Shaarawy released a cross to Rick Karsdorp at the far post and later knocked it back for Abraham’s header from a yard.
Reacting after the game, Roma manager, Jose Mourinho criticised his side for ‘giving the ball away so cheaply’.
The special one who was impressed with Vitesse in the Conference League joked Lazio are ‘home smoking with Maurizio Sarri’ to prepare for the derby.
Written by: Oladipupo Mojeed