Di Francesco is capable of surprising Klopp

Di Francesco is capable of surprising Klopp

The first semi-final match of the Champions League between Liverpool and Roma will be held today. The Wolves will come to Anfield, where they will try to score an away goal and ease themselves a task of advancing to the finals.

Both teams sensationally got into the top four European clubs, what we talked about after the semi-final draw. Before the first head-to-head encounter, most media and forecasters tend to believe in Liverpool’s advantage. However, variability is on Roma’s side. Eusebio Di Francesco showed this season that he knows how to breakdown the opponents and hit the weak spots.

It was clear since the group stage, when the Romans confidently passed Chelsea defense  and scored six goals in Courtois’ net in total. The start continued in the play-off matches against Shakhtar and the apogee of the managerial thought was the second encounter with Barcelona. The Italian changed the formation from 3-4-3 to 4-3-2-1 based on the opponents’ style of the game. Whereas the players completed the manager’s tasks as if they prepared for these matches for months. The Symbiosis of Roma’s footballer with the head coach can become the key factor in the confrontation with Liverpool.

The Italian team’s manager Eusebio Di Francesco said in an interview:

“We need to play like a team and pay a special attention to defense. Tactics is first and foremost, it must be thoroughly understood. Roma are going to play against a high-class opponents”.

Liverpool are not as variable as the Wolves. Jurgen Klopp uses two scenarios during the course of a match maximum. First of all, it’s Hyperpressing, when the team is taking away the ball when lost within the first five seconds and continues the attack. This style is based on the ball control and the constant shift of the attack vector on skillful wing players. However, the experience says that if the Reds’ opponents shut down – expect trouble.

Secondly, it is a counter-attack game. The scenario works much more productively in Liverpool, which was proven by the games with Manchester City. However, the question becomes actual whether Roma will allow themselves to play offensively at Anfield, and whether Klopp's guys will be able to open the saturated defense of Di Francesco under the 4-3-2-1 formation.

There is a probability that in the upcoming game at Anfield, Liverpool will accept the Citizens role in the quarter-final confrontation and the Wolves will try to look for Dzeko with vertical passes. The Bosnian this season proved his suitability in confrontations with famed defenders. And whereas the Merseysiders’ defense is far from perfect, Roma will have their chances.

Bookmakers believe in Liverpool’s advancement and the odds reflect that. The odds on Klopp team’s advancement are 1.40 and on a victory in today’s match are 1.55. Roma cannot be called the underdog in the confrontation against the Reds, but the odds of 3.00 on Di Francesco in the last Champions League round says a lot. Whereas the draw at Anfield is evaluated as 4.50, while the guests victory is 6.50.