Serie A: Atalanta Rout Roma To Regain Form
Atalanta rediscovered the form that made them Serie A's most entertaining side last season as they hit back with four second-half goals to thump AS Roma 4-1 on Sunday.
After finishing third last season and scoring 98 goals in the process, Atalanta have struggled for consistency and it was widely reported last week that coach Gian Piero Gasperini had fallen out with team captain Alejandro Gomez.
"We played the first half like warriors, and the second half like kids with a completely different attitude," said furious Roma coach Paulo Fonseca.
"If we had maintained the attitude we showed in the first half, we could have beaten any opponent. The team let their heads drop for no reason, it's hard to understand what happened today."
Gomez did not even make the bench on Sunday and Roma ahead after only three minutes when Edin Dzeko took advantage of slack marking to turn in Henrikh Mkhitaryan's cross.
The visitors could easily have had a second before halftime as Leonardo Spinazzola's lob hit the post and Lorenzo Pellegrini forced Pierluigi Gollini to turn away a powerful free kick.
But the game changed completely after Josip Ilicic came on at halftime for the hosts.
Duvan Zapata equalised just before the hour mark from an Ilicic pass and the Slovenian also provided the cross for Robin Gosens to head Atalanta in front in the 70th minute.
Two minutes later, Luis Muriel, who had just come on as a substitute, intercepted a Jordan Veretout pass to add the third and Ilicic scored the fourth himself with a solo goal five minutes from time, weaving his way through the Roma defence.
Roma stayed fourth with 24 points, one ahead of Napoli who were away to Lazio later Sunday, while Atalanta climbed to seventh with 21. (Reuters)