July 22, 2012
Italian club opens US tour with 4-0 win over Zaglebie Lubin at Wrigley Field
CHICAGO--It might have been billed as the “Friendly at the Confines,” but AS Roma were not very friendly to Zaglebie Lubin at Wrigley Field Sunday, scoring four first half goals en route to a 4-0 win in the first game of their American tour.
The match proved to be an offensive spectacle, especially in the first half, when Roma pumped all of their goals into the net, and the Polish side had their chances, a number of them thwarted by offside calls.
The Italians set the tone for the match, taking a lead less than two minutes in, as Osvaldo finished up a nice passing sequence, scoring into the goal that was set up in front of the ivy-covered right field wall.
It took the Italians only seven minutes to double the lead, this time as Panagiotis Tachtsidis beat two defenders and put a perfectly-placed chip over 6'5" Zaglebie goalkeeper Marek Koziol.
Roma's third goal was its most spectacular. Running onto a ball over the top of the Lubin defense, while in full stride, Erik Lamela hit the ball with the outside of his left foot, putting it past Koziol.
Roma closed out the scoring in the 44th minute, when Bojan Krkic dribbled through a maze of defenders into the right side of the 18 yard box as the goalkeeper came out. Bojan then coolly slipped the ball inside the opposite post.
Italian national team star Francesco Totti, who entered the game as a second-half substitute, had a chance to add to the scoreline, putting a 71st minute strike off the post.
Zaglebie had their chances, but could not finish any of them. In the 22nd minute, Arkadiusz Wozniak turned on a ball at the edge of the penalty arc, but put his hard shot right at Roma goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg.
Seven minutes later, Szymon Pawlowski got onto a ball over the top of the defense, but sailed his shot over the goal on the third base line.
They came close again in the 42nd minute, when Costa played a nice ball from the left side of the area, as Stekelenburg came out. The goalkeeper was beaten, but there was no one at the far post for what would have been an easy tap in.
In addition to the offensive fireworks from the Italian side, the crowd of 22,181 also saw the Roma debut of U.S. National Team midfielder Michael Bradley, who spent part of his youth growing up in the city while his father was coach of the Fire.
Roma moves onto to play their second game of the U.S. Tour in another iconic ballpark, when they face Liverpool at Fenway Park on Wednesday.