Roma will be looking to bounce back from their derby disappointment by taking their first step of a potential cup run on Tuesday night.
The mood among the red-and-yellow side of Rome is low after a 3-0 defeat to Lazio in the Derby Della Capitale on Friday. It will take time to earn redemption, but the shift of focus to the Coppa Italia can be an initial relief.
Roma welcome Spezia to Stadio Olimpico on Tuesday for the first of two meetings in five days between the two sides. Before Saturday’s Serie A game is a one-off knockout tie in the Coppa Italia.
As usual, Roma are entering the cup at the Round of 16 stage. Spezia have had to beat Cittadella and Bologna to get to this stage, so will be eyeing an even bigger scalp.
In fact, the only previous meeting between these two sides was in the Coppa Italia five years ago – and Spezia won on penalties. Roma will be hoping not to make such hard work of this tie.Embed from Getty Images
Even so, Paulo Fonseca may rotate his troops and give opportunities to more fringe players. While there are only a couple of youngsters in the squad, there could be a chance for more senior backups who have not played as much this season.
One such player who would have been hoping to play is Amadou Diawara. However, the midfielder is out of the squad due to injury and continues to be linked with a transfer away.
Other than that, it is a close to full-strength squad, giving Fonseca plenty of options to choose from. There could be chances for the likes of Borja Mayoral, Carles Perez and Marash Kumbulla to come into the lineup.
The winner of this game will play Napoli in the quarter-finals.
The game kicks off at 8:15pm UK time and will be available to watch live on the BT Sport ESPN channel.