Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Prediction: Roma vs Salzburg

Verdict: Both teams to score – No

Best Odds: 8/11

Bookmaker: Unibet

Needing to mount a real turnaround on Thursday night if they’re to extend on their Europa League adventure, Roma will welcome Salzburg to the Stadio Olimpico.

Roma

Starting with the hosts, while Roma might find themselves still leading the chase to clinch a top-four return in 2023, it is no secret that Jose Mourinho’s side are seeking some much-needed stability. Putting in a toothless display away at Salzburg last week as they opened their knockout stage adventure with a toothless 1-0 loss, the one-time Manchester United boss finds plenty of pressure on his shoulders heading into Thursday’s showdown. However, although the Italian heavyweights might have made an immediate return to winning ways last weekend as they snatched a 1-0 victory at home against Verona, Mourinho’s side have still won just a pair of their previous six matchups across all formats. With that run stemming all the way back to January 22nd, Roma are also searching for a clinical edge. It should be highlighted, the midweek hosts have managed to record more than a single strike in just one of those six appearances.

Team News

Handed what could be a major blow on Thursday night, Roma are sweating over the fitness of England international Tammy Abraham due to an eye injury. Likewise, there are concerns that ex-Juventus superstar Paolo Dybala will also miss out here.

Although Lorenzo Pellegrini might have limped out of training earlier in the week, Mourinho is hopeful that the 26-year-old can play some part in midweek.

Salzburg

As for the visitors, while Salzburg might have only marked their return from an extended winter break earlier in the month, the Red Bulls have certainly come flying out of the traps. Sat in pole position to defend their Bundesliga crown this season, Matthias Jaissle’s side should find the mood in their camp at a real high. Putting in a stellar display as they welcomed Roma to Wals-Siezenheim last week, the Austrian powerhouse have won each of their three appearances since returning to action. Picking up some perfect momentum over the weekend as they breezed their way to a 3-1 victory away at WSG Tirol, Salzburg will be desperate to spring a major Europa League upset here. On the verge of picking up what would be a famous European scalp on Thursday night, Jaissle’s men should travel out to Rome riding what has been a recent wave.

Team News

All handed a rest while on domestic duties against WSG Tirol over the weekend, the likes of Noah Okafor, Amar Dedic, Oumar Solet and Fernando should make a full return at the Stadio Olimpico.

Bagging that first-leg winner in Austria last week, 24-year-old Nicolas Capaldo should be joined in midfield by Lucas Gourna-Douath.

Key Factors to Consider

    • When the two sides met at the Red Bull Arena for their first-leg meeting last week, Salzburg picked up a shock 1-0 victory.
    • Roma have won just a pair of their previous six matchups across all formats – a run that stems back to January 22nd.
    • Salzburg have won each of their three appearances since returning from the winter break by an aggregate score of 8-1.
    • Each of Roma’s last four matchups across all competitions have finished with under 2.5 goals.
    • Likewise, Thursday’s hosts have recorded a clean sheet in five of their previous six contests at the Stadio Olimpico.

    Conclusion

    While Roma might still be tipped as a standout pick to extend on their Europa League adventure on Thursday night, Mourinho’s side have shown some extended inconsistencies over the past month. Falling to a toothless 1-0 loss away at Salzburg in their first-leg meeting last week, the former Manchester United boss is desperate for his side to find a much-needed clinical edge in the final third. However, although the Austrian giants might travel out to Italy sat in pole position to spring a major upset, neutrals could be treated to a cagey affair from the Stadio Olimpico. It should be noted, with Roma recording a clean sheet in five of their last six battles on home soil, we’re backing chances to come at a premium here.

    Verdict: Both teams to score – No

    Best Odds: 8/11

    Bookmaker: Unibet

    ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Tom Dunstan


    Formerly of The Independent, Tom has spent the past six years as one of our senior writers and betting experts. Alongside working with numerous publications from across the globe, Tom also graduated from the University of Falmouth in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media.
    Spending almost the past decade working in countries such as Australia, New Zealand and Canada, he has also spent time featuring in sports radio. Tom can be followed on Instagram - @iamtomdunstan

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