Super Eagles eligible star Folorunsho helps Hellas Verona to a win over Mourinho’s AS Roma

Michael Folorunsho in action for Hellas Verona against AS Roma. Photo Credit: IMAGO / ABACAPRESS

Super Eagles eligible star Folorunsho helps Hellas Verona to a win over Mourinho’s AS Roma

Joba Ogunwale 22:05 - 26.08.2023

Michael Folorunsho was in action as AS Roma’s poor start to the new Serie A season continued on Saturday night.

Michael Folorunsho played a vital role as Hellas Verona condemned Jose Mourinho’s AS Roma to their first loss of the new Serie A season.

Ondrej Duja and Cyril Ngonge's first-half strikes ensured Housem Aouar’s second-half header was nothing more than a consolation. 

Folorunsho played his role in the clash, proving to be a thorn in the flesh of Roma defenders Chris Smalling and Gianluca Mancini. 

Mourinho absent and Roma are stunned

Roma came into the match without their manager Jose Mourinho, who was serving the last of his two-match ban, having missed the 2-2 draw against Salernitana in their opening match of the season. 

 I Giallorossi started the game against Salernitana very well, but they got off to a bad start at The Stadio Marcantonio Bentegodi as Ondrej Duda put Hellas Verona ahead as early as the fourth minute. 

The Slovakian star finished off a rebound after Roma goalkeeper Rui Patricio had failed to deal with a shot from distance properly. 

It was a shocking start from Roma, but the capital club responded well, with Bryan Cristante’s header coming off the crossbar. 

Roma continued to press for the equaliser, with Lorenzo Pellegrini, back in the side after missing the game against Salernitana, going close. 

However, the captain’s effort went just wide after a brilliant control. Roma continued to dominate possession, but just as it looked like they were getting closer, Hellas Verona doubled their lead. 

The home side made it two just before halftime through Cyril Ngonge, who finished superbly after Roma were caught on the break. 

Folorunsho troubles Roma but Aouar pulls one back 

Roma started the second half, making wholesale changes. The away side brought on Stephan El-Shaarawy, Leonardo Spinazzola and Houssem Aouar for Diego Llorente, Rasmus Kristensen and Leandro Paredes respectively. 

The changes appeared to work, with Roma playing a majority of the ball in Verona’s half. However, the home side were brilliant anytime they had possession with Michael Folorunsho’s brilliant hold-up play. 

The 25-year-old Italian, who is eligible to play for Nigeria, held his own against Smalling and Mancini. 

However, despite his effort, Verona’s had their lead reduced after Aouar pulled one back for Mourinho’s men. 

The Algerian headed into an empty net after Andrea Belotti won a challenge ahead of Verona’s goalkeeper. 

Aouar’s goal gave Roma a lift, but the away side struggled to create clear chances after the goal. 

Roma were given a lifeline after Isaac Hien was sent off for Verona, but despite the man advantage in the final minutes of the game, the away side failed to find an equaliser.