Fiorentina vs Roma. Somehow, Fiorentina got off to a first half lead of three to zero. Roma did not space well. They needed to relieve the pressure, change the point of attack, yield to overwhelmingly bad decisions, space, find width, spread the field, or get wide. There wasn't enough width.
"Sounds like management talk," said George Richstedler from behind his tea.
"Indeed it is."
They had a chance to capitalize on set pieces; free kicks and corners, but nothing came of it. Are Roma's best days behind them? Do they have old players? How are they doing all the wrong things? Spacing. It's so clear. Spacing, finding the width, capitalizing on set pieces. They have already struggled to score goals. The coach, with so many years with Roma is wondering the same thing: how is it going so poorly?
I was on my eighteenth cigarette in three minutes, feverishly trying to put sound mind to this piece, but old Richstedler was in one of his moods, bordering on dissidence, constantly going back forth from his Dexter DVD, season four, episode three, to pictures of Yasser Arafat.
The winner of the game would advance to the quarterfinals of the Europa League. As the second half progressed Roma came out in a frenzy but the opponent's defense was well-shaped, denying space into dangerous spots. The understanding of positioning of teammates was misplaced all game.
"That's all you have?" Richstedler asked. He was keen to understand a makeshift sports piece.
"I think you're on to me, sir." This was the only response I could give. After all, I was seen all over town with his wife, visiting different yogurt places. But, it was just yogurt. We both share a passion for walking and yogurt. What are you going to do?
As it turned out, Roma was knocked out in disappointing style from their fellow Italian countrymen. Defensively, from Fiorentina, things were superb, not to mention playing on the road in Rome, which is always a difficult task.
(NS) refers to "Non-Soccer" related blog entries, stories and essays.
ALL WRITTEN WORK COPYRIGHT SHANE STAY 2014-2018