Benevento took a shock lead at the Stadio Olimpico and Federico Fazio just about got Roma back on level terms before half-time.
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The Giallorossi ended their dire run of results with a win at Verona last week and knew a victory would allow them to leapfrog rivals Lazio into fourth place. They were forced into changes, as Radja Nainggolan and Lorenzo Pellegrini were suspended, Maxime Gonalons, Rick Karsdorp and Jonathan Silva injured, Daniele De Rossi not fully fit and Bruno Peres frozen out for crashing his car. Le Streghe were revamped in January, but Danilo Cataldi and Luca Antei were sidelined.
It was a shock start, because Benevento took the lead within seven minutes at the Stadio Olimpico. Guilherme took on three defenders single-handed and his finish took a deflection off Kostas Manolas to dribble into the far bottom corner. It was the ideal way for Guilherme to get his debut Serie A goal, just one day after the birth of son Enzo.
Benevento were the only side in Europe without a single away point all season and it was only their fourth goal on their travels, the first in 528 minutes of away football.
Edin Dzeko’s header was palmed off the line by Christian Puggioni, who got down quickly, then the striker saw another effort ricochet off Nicolas Viola’s shoulder.
Roma did get back on level terms when an Aleksandar Kolarov free kick found Federico Fazio’s free header into the near top corner.
Stephan El Shaarawy nodded a corner wide, but former Tottenham midfielder Sandro made a decisive sliding tackle just as Perotti was pulling the trigger on the edge of the box.
El Shaarawy sprung the offside trap to sting Puggioni’s gloves at the near post, but Benevento were more than in the match at half-time.
Roma 1-1 Benevento (Half-Time)
Guilherme 7 (B), Fazio 26 (R)
Roma: Alisson; Florenzi, Manolas, Fazio, Kolarov; Strootman, Gerson; Cengiz Under, Perotti, El Shaarawy; Dzeko
Benevento: Puggioni; Letizia, Djimsiti, Costa, Venuti; Viola, Sandro; Djuricic, Guilherme, D’Alessandro; Brignola
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