Roma travel to Geneva on Thursday evening to face-off against Servette on Matchday 5 of the UEFA Europa League group stage.
The Giallorossi will look to bounce back from their defeat against Slavia Praha in the previous round which saw them fall behind the Czech side on goal difference in Group G. Meanwhile, the hosts scored two late goals to beat Sheriff Tiraspol on Matchday 4 having trailed 1-0 until the 84th minute. A 93rd minute penalty from Chris Bedia secured Servette their first win of the group stage and kept Sheriff bottom of Group G with just one point.
Kick-off is scheduled for 21.00 CET at the Stade de Genève.
Sitting third in the group and five points behind Slavia Praha and Roma, it remains to be seen how the hosts approach Thursday’s affair.
Manager René Weiler may opt to field some of his second choice players against the Giallorossi and ensure his key players are rested for their huge league showdown this weekend. Servette, currently third in the Swiss Super League, travel to Bern to face-off against second-placed Young Boys on Sunday evening.
Though, it should be noted the Swiss side have proven difficult to breakdown when playing at home. IN fact, they’ve suffered only four defeats in their last 16 home European matches, winning seven and drawing five.
Jose Mourinho’s side enter Thursday’s clash with a chance to secure qualification. While a draw would be enough to punch their ticket to the next round, the Special One made it clear he’s only interested in victory from his team.
“A draw doesn’t tell me anything,” Mourinho stated during his pre-match press conference. “If we don’t qualify Thursday then we’ll be back in Rome in two weeks. Ultimately though, we have to win. We’ll need to be very psychologically strong.”
Trailing Slavia Praha on goal difference, Roma will do all they can to finish top of the group and avoid the play-off round—which potentially adds two more games to their already packed fixture list.
SERVETTE (4-4-2): Mali; Tsunemoto, Rouiller, Severin, Kaloga; Bolla, Cognat, Diba, Kutesa; Guillemenot, Crivelli
Unavailable: David Douline, Bradley Mazikou
ROMA (3-5-2): Svilar; Mancini, Llorente, Ndicka; Celik, Cristante, Paredes, Bove, El Shaarawy; Belotti, Lukaku
Unavailable: Tammy Abraham, Marash Kumbulla, Chris Smalling, Rasmus Kristensen, Sardar Azmoun