ibnlive » Football

Late Roma strike stun spirited Torino

Goal.com
Jan 19, 2009 at 04:22pm IST

New Delhi: Roma and Torino played out a fine match, only decided by a glorious goal from Julio Baptista.

Pre-Match News

Torino coach Walter Novellino gave new signing Paolo Hernan Dellafiore his first start for the club. Meanwhile, Alex Calderoni was given the start in goal ahead of Matteo Sereni. Alessandro Rosina and Rolando Bianchi found themselves on the bench.

AT LAST:AS Roma's Julio Baptista (front) celebrates with teammate John Arne Riise after scoring against Torino.

Luciano Spalletti had several absentees to contend with - including captain Francesco Totti, Mirko Vucinic, and goalkeeper Alexandre Doni.

First Half

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Roma had plenty of the early pressure as they tried to build attacks through Jeremy Menez, but the first real chance fell to Torino as Saumel tested Giallorossi back-up keeper Artur from long range, who had to push the ball out for a corner.

However, Roma hit back immediately, Rodrigo Taddei's cut-back was hit ahrd by midweek hero Julio Baptista, but the effort was blocked.

The Giallorossi had a glorious chance to open the scoring after 15 minutes. A corner found Philippe Mexes at pint-blank range, but Calderoni made a fine reaction save, while Baptista and Mexes could not connect following the rebound.

Baptista caused trouble in the Granata backline once again. However, his control was lacking at the crucial moment, running out of room.

On 31' Torino created a wonderful opportunity as Amoruso's backheel in the box set Barone free, but the former Azzurri man misplaced his finish from close range under pressure from Mexes' slide tackle, the move also may have been offside.

Nothing else of note occurred before the half came to a close, as the sides were unable to break one another down.

Second Half

Torino began the second half pushing forward, but a give-and-go was halted when Stellone was judged offside.

Roma had one of their best chances of the match when Menez's pass split open the defense, but Calderoni saved Taddei's low drive with his feet to keep the game scoreless.

Austrian player Saumel tried his luck from distance again, but the ball flew wide to Artur's left. Walter Novellino tried to inject some creativity into his side by inserting Alessandro Rosina and he immediately had an impact, putting in a fine cross for Diana that was not turned on goal.

The home side seemed the much more determined in the second half and were controlling the proceedings, throwing cross after cross into the Roma area and pinning the Giallorossi in their own half.

Rosina was involved once again on 71 minutes, when his ball into the area was right on Stellone's head. However, Mexes was alert to the danger. Soon after, Diana was in all alone, but was called offside. Perhaps a fortunate decision, as his finish was embaressingly off target.

Rosina continue to dazzle the crowd with his twists and turns in midfield, but still the game remained deadlocked going into the last 15 minutes.

Menez used his speed on the counter, but Baptsita's turn and strike ended up high over the crossbar.

Substitute Alberto Aquilani then tried a spectacular bicycle-kick, folllowing Baptista's control, though his connection with the ball was poor and it ballooned out for a goal kick.

Rosina's mazy run saw him beat two men, but Mexes was able to pluck the ball off of his feet, just before the Torino number ten was going to release his shot.

In the final minute, Rosina's cross was deflected, but the spinning ball was picked up by Artur before it reached Stellone.

Roma had been on the back foot for the entire second half, but Baptista came up with a fantastic injury time winner! His bicycle kick found the back of the net to give Roma three precious points.

Meanwhile, Barone's complaints were to no avail, as he was sent off and a spirited Torino were resigned to a 1-0 defeat.

Torino 0-1 Roma

Goals: 91' Baptista (R)

Booked: 16' Barone (T), 20' Pizarro (R), 40' Amoruso (T), 53' Colombo (T)

Sent Off: 92' Barone

Torino: Calderoni - Dellafiore, Pratali (25' Colombo) , Di Loreto, Ogbonna - Diana, Saumel. Barone, Vailatti (59' Abate) - Amoruso (57' Rosina), Stellone

Roma: Artur - Cicinho, Mexes, Juan, Riise - Taddei (61' Aquilani), Pizarro, DeRossi, Brighi (79' Cassetti) - Menez, Baptista

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