Livorno Club Focus: Sobering defeat for the Amaranto
The Tuscan side made a good start to the game and were compact in defense, making it hard for Rudi Garcia’s men to break them down, restricting them to long range shots. Davide Nicola certainly had his men well drilled for large parts of the game and this is one positive he can take from a sobering defeat.
Despite this, there were many, many more negatives, in a game which confirmed all Livorno tifosi’s worst thoughts before the season; the Amaranto have not had a good enough transfer market and are a certainty to go back down to Serie B.
As aforementioned, Nicola had set his team up well for much of the match but once the first goal of the match went in on the 65th minute the team seemed to capitulate, conceding a second just two minutes later.
The second goal by Florenzi was inevitable, with the Italian making numerous identical runs down the right wing throughout the second half. The 22 year old was continuously finding space in behind both wing backs, who were positionaly disastrous at times, and it end up costing them.
Wing back is one of the key positions for any team playing with a three man defense and it was abundantly clear that the Amaranto’s were not good enough on Sunday, both in attack and in defense.
The wing backs need to be in sync with the defenders and if they are going to make a run forward a midfielder needs to drop in and cover for them. However, this seldom happened on Sunday and as mentioned the gaps left down the wings came back to haunt them, with a simple long ball down the left wing leading to the second and game winning goal.
It was also evident that the lone striker, Paulinho, was isolated for most of the game and had to feed of long balls for large parts of the game.
On the odd occasion the Brazilian did receive the ball, support was hard to come by, with very few runners from midfield and the wing backs also failing to provide support on the wings.
They did manage to involve the wing backs to a small extent in the first half, mainly Pasquale Schiattarella on the right hand side, who managed to get a few crosses in to the box. Again, however, Paulinho was alone in the box against four or five Roma defenders.
In spite of all the doom and gloom surrounding the club right now, one positive is the signing of Innocent Emeghara from Siena on a season long loan with the option to buy half of his contract at the end of the season.
The Swiss international was a bright spark in an awful Siena team as he scored seven goals in Seventeen games, after joining the Bianconeri in January of this year.
The 24 year old could help form a good partnership with Paulinho as his pace and finishing ability will complement Paulinho’s physical and aerial ability.
This one signing however, will not drag them out of the relegation battle and they still look destined for a bottom three finish. It must be remembered however, that they were playing against one of the strongest teams in the league and they won’t be facing such strong opposition every week.
The upcoming fixture against fellow relegation candidates, Sassuolo, will show what the Amaranto are made of and in some ways could define their season.