How Roma fared in final game before Champions League semi-final…

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Roma were afforded a more comfortable domestic outing than Liverpool prior to Tuesday’s Champions League semi-final first-leg at Anfield.

The Serie A side cruised to a 3-0 win over SPAL to maintain all confidence heading into what promises to be a frantic midweek contest.

Three points also enhanced their chances of a top four finish, with Lazio and and Inter Milan continuing to breathe down their necks in fourth and fifth, respectively.

A Francesco Vicari own goal gifted the visitors an opener in the 33rd minute, before Radja Nainggolan’s 52nd minute effort was added to by Patrik Schick to complete the win seven minutes later.

Liverpool were handed perhaps a more timely wake up call as they relinquished a two goal lead to draw 2-2 against West Brom at the Hawthorns.

Jurgen Klopp fielded a rotated side with Tuesday’s matchup evidently in mind, handing a start to goalscorer Danny Ings whilst making three changes to the back four expected to start against Roma.

Danny Ings – image by

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Roma boss Eusebio Di Francesco similarly made changes to his team to preserves the legs of his key players ahead of the trip to England.

Star striker Edin Dzeko was an unused substitute, whilst regular midfield starters Daniele De Rossi and Alessandro Florenzi were also granted valuable rests.

Defender Kostas Manolas eased concerns over his fitness by returning for his first start since picking up a knock in Roma’s recent 0-0 draw with Lazio.

He promises to be a leading figure in the Italian side’s mission to thwart Liverpool’s front three.

Two days to go and already the nerves are kicking in.

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