Roma – Brighton & Hove Albion: Roma Put The Seagulls To The Sword (4-0)

The Seagulls flew to Rome with dreams of a memorable night at the Stadio Olimpico, but their performance will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. Brighton & Hove Albion were flattened by a resurgent Roma, who effectively put the tie to bed in the first leg.

Tactical analysis and match report by Neel Shelat.

On paper, Daniele De Rossi has come in and absolutely transformed Roma. They had lost just one match under him prior to this one, and nearly half of their Serie A victories have been registered in his short time in charge. Undoubtedly, the 40-year-old tactician deserves a lot of credit for changing the atmosphere around the club after a typically dismal end to José Mourinho’s tenure, but there still is much to be done from a tactical perspective as their previous Europa League tie demonstrated.

With just one win in their last five games, Brighton might have felt that they came up against Roma at the wrong time. At their free-flowing best, they would have surely backed themselves to get the better of the Italian giants, but their poor form made this a very even tie. Add to that Roma’s reluctance to press under De Rossi and Roberto De Zerbi’s well-documented struggles to break down compact deep blocks, and the prospect of elimination for one of the Europa League’s quiet contenders seemed a real threat.

Roma lined up in De Rossi’s favored 4-3-3 formation. Mile Svilar stayed . . .

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