Serie A Women 2021/22: How Juventus Women saw off Roma’s efficient attacking performance – tactical analysis
Roma Women hosted Juventus Women in the fifth fixture of Serie A Women and the game ended with a difficult 1-2 Juventus win thanks to the goals of Martina Rosucci and Andrea Stašková who were successful in turning the table on Roma after Lucia Di Guglielmo’s first goal of the match at the 28th minute.
This Roma performance showed once again that this team is becoming stronger every season and can obviously challenge seriously for the UEFA Women’s Champions League spot along with Milan, Sassuolo, Inter and Fiorentina. But at the same time, Juventus proved that they’re ready to do everything to conserve their league title for another season despite the growing challenge from the other teams. Therefore, beating one of the direct opponents can only be an important step towards winning the 2021-2022 Serie A title.
In this tactical analysis, the focus will be on Roma’s attack and their attempts to surpass Juventus’s defence while also looking at Juventus’ tactics and how they countered these attempts. This will be done by using data and clear examples from the match.
Roma started the match with the 4-3-3 formation relying on Camelia Ceasar as a goalkeeper, Lucia Di Guglielmo, Allyson Swaby, Elena Linari and Elisa Bartoli in defence, Thaisa, Andressa Alves and Giada Greggi as central midfielders with Benedetta Glionna and Annamaria Serturini as wingers to support former Sassuolo striker, Valeria Pirone.
On the other hand, Joe Montemurro and his staff opted for the 4-3-3 formation too with Pauline Peyraud Magnin as a goalkeeper, Tuija Hyyrynen, Martina Lenzini, Cecilia Salvai and Lisa Boattin in defence, Sofie Junge Pedersen, Martina Rosucci and Valentina Cernoia as central midfielders with Lina Hurtig and Barbara Bonansea as wingers supporting the team’s striker, Cristiana Girelli.
Roma’s attacking performance
Roma started this match without fear of their opponent and without hesitance especially in terms of attacking despite the absence of their fundamental midfielder and playmaker Manuela Giugliano. Roma therefore relied on both wingers to create chances as Juventus defended narrowly and left some manoeuvring space for excellent players like Glionna and Serturini. That’s exactly why we noticed numerous dangerous crosses especially in the first-half and from both wings while Pirone wasn’t able to exploit such long passes due to marking. The former Sassuolo striker could have done better in this regard as she had the opportunity to escape from marking several times especially when defenders left some distance between them and her, such as in the following example.
Glionna here was good enough to anticipate Pirone’s movement and give her a cross towards the direction of her run, but the latter didn’t exploit the chance in the best possible way. The danger continued to be created from Roma players despite Juventus’ high pressing and disturbing marking even in midfield. And Glionna once again was at the center of her team’s actions when she dribbled past two Juventus’ players and cut inside to surprisingly serve Greggi who was waiting for a shooting opportunity from outside the box. And even though her shot was saved by Magnin, Lucia Di Guglielmo was there to finish the action with a goal and the credit goes to her for positioning herself in that strategic spot and at the right timing.
Following the goal, Roma tried to play with more caution but with exploitation of all possible attacking chances. And once again, Glionna was at the heart of these actions since she moved to midfield this time, acting as an advanced playmaker and serving Andressa with a key pass to give her the opportunity of being in a one-on-one situation with her marker and near the goal. However, Lenzini was brave enough to avoid a second goal with an excellent sliding tackle.
Roma continued to attack whenever possible but with less efficiency and then committed some defensive mistakes that led to conceding two goals and losing the match in a disappointing way after being ahead on the scoresheet.
Juventus’ reaction and show of experience
As the title suggests, Juventus’ experience in dealing with Serie A games became very known for everyone and the team consolidates this idea every time they happen to behind in score against teams like Sassuolo, Roma and Milan. In fact, Juventus tried to alleviate Roma’s attacking power and playmaking efficiency by keeping a high line of pressing and disturbing their opponent’s build-up like this picture shows.
Nevertheless, Roma’s players were good enough to get rid of this pressing and reach the final third so often and score a goal that complicated the match for the Bianconere. It should be said though that on the other hand, Juventus were not able to create tangible scoring chances in the first-half and all that they had was corners and a few free-kicks that weren’t well exploited. The team continued to suffer even in the second-half as Roma continued to attack through the wings and sometimes even through midfield.
Then, thanks to a very beautiful Rosucci shot from outside the box, Juventus were able to get back in the game and gained some psychological advantage over Roma as their motivation increased.
The game then was going towards a draw as both teams were tired and we saw desperate chances from both sides but Andrea Stašková’s experience and finishing abilities created the difference in the final minutes of the match, allowing Juventus to steal a fundamental win for the Serie A title following a corner-kick. In fact, Stašková was positioned on the near-post and waited to receive such a ball but Roma’s defender didn’t mark her tightly enough and was surprised with Stašková’s ability to convert it into a goal.
Juventus proved once again their ability to turn the table against tough Serie A teams while not being in their best form and despite committing mistakes initially. Having some excellent players on the bench was also a contributing factor that helped them be clinical in the second-half and overcome Roma’s excellent attacking performance.
On the other side, Roma’s players shouldn’t feel disappointed after this loss as they played one of their best matches of the season so far and showed to their direct opponents that they are ready to battle for the second and why not the first spot of the league. All what is needed now is to improve the defensive compactness during delicate times and gain some more experience to be able to beat big teams like Juventus.