AS Roma who are currently sitting in eighth place thus far in the Serie A season travel to Bologna to take on surprising Bologna FC who are currently second place and only two points behind Inter Milan FC for first.
Roma have been inconsistent thus far this season, to say the least after drawing with both Genoa CFC and SS Lazio to start the season. They did, however, pick up their first win of the Serie A campaign last weekend after beating US Sassuolo Calcio 4-2 and their second win came midweek in UEFA Europa League, winning that match 4-0. They certainly looked much more organized in their last two matches than in their previous ones.
New manager Paulo Fonseca was very impressive at FC Shakhtar Donetsk and it is clear he is trying to bring some of that offensive creativity to the Roma side. Of course, this process will take time and patience but if Roma are hoping to qualify for UEFA Champions League or even Europa League they will need to start pulling together some results.
Bologna, on the other hand, look like a completely new team under the tough Sinisa Mihajlovic. Although Mihajlovic has not been able to be on the bench for all their matches as he currently goes through chemotherapy, the team is fighting hard and playing well as a unit for him.
No doubt one of the most surprising starts so far this season, Bologna have a 2-1-0 record and have beaten the likes of Brescia Calcio and S.P.A.L thus far. The Giallorossi will surely pose as a much tougher opponent for Bologna and they may struggle to pull out a victory if Roma are able to play to their potential.
Roma (4-2-3-1): Pau Lopez; Alessandro Florenzi, Gianluca Mancini, Federico Fazio, Aleksander Kolarov; Bryan Cristante, Jordan Veretout; Justin Kluivert, Lorenzo Pellegrini, Henrikh Mkhitaryan; Edin Dzeko
Bologna (4-2-3-1): Lukasz Skorupski; Takehiro Tomiyasu, Stefano Denswil, Mattia Bani, Mitchell Dijks; Gary Medel, Blerim Dzemaili; Riccardo Orsolini, Roberto Soriano, Nicola Sansone; Rodrigo Palacio
The Giallorossi look to be without injured right-back Davide Zappacosta, centre-back Chris Smalling, injured wingers Diego Perotti and Cengiz Under.
Bologna will be without injured veteran centre-back Danilo Larangeira but it seems the rest of their squad is healthy and available for their upcoming match.
Who to watch
There is a lot of talent in this Roma side and a few who have impressed so far this season would be; winger Justin Kluivert, veteran striker Edin Dzeko and centre-back Gianluca Mancini.
Kluivert has now scored in back to back games against Sassuolo last weekend and against Istanbul Basaksehir FK midweek in Europa Leauge. The speedy winger Kluivert looks to be finally meeting his potential and will hope he can keep this good form up.
Dzeko looks to have once again found his form after a rough season last year. Also, scoring midweek, look for Dzeko to lead the line and create some good opportunities.
Mancini has impressed at the back since coming over from Atalanta B.C in the summer and the young Italian has been pretty solid for a shaky Roma back-line
This impressive Bologna side are showing a lot of potential this season, especially some of their young guns. Young right-back Takehiro Tomiyasu has been very impressive since coming over to Serie A in the summer and has been solid defensively.
Italian right-winger Riccardo Orsolini has also impressed this season, looking very creative, fast and gets himself in good positions. Not to mention he is putting up points thus far, Orsolini has one goal and two assists in just three Serie A games this season.
Lastly, look to the veteran striker Rodrigo Palacio to come in clutch for this Bologna team and even score the odd crucial goal.
This match will be one to watch with some good attacking talent in both squads, and surely there will be some goals. If Roma can find their form under their new coach Fonseca and are able to handle the hot Bologna attack, they should come out of this one with a decent result.
With Bologna currently in top form, if they are given a few decent opportunities to score, they will do so. Roma also needs to be aware of the pace of some of the Bologna attackers on the counterattack.
The match takes places Sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m (GMT+1) at the Stadio Renato Dall'Ara in Bologna.