Roma 2 -1 Porto: Nicolo Zaniolo at the double for Di Francesco's side

Teenager Nicolo Zaniolo struck twice after the break for Roma, but Adrian Lopez's 79th-minute goal gives Porto hope in the last-16 tie.   Nicolo Zaniolo scored both goals as Roma recorded a 2-1 home victory over Porto in the first leg of their last-16 Champions League tie.

A largely forgettable game finally came to life in the 70th minute, Zaniolo angling a right-footed shot beyond Iker Casillas to put the Serie A side on their way to a first win over Porto in European competition.

Edin Dzeko created the opener and was also involved in the second too, his low drive striking the post before his team-mate tucked home the rebound.

There was little sign of the drama to come in a sedate first-half, even with the dangerous Dzeko hitting the woodwork shortly before the break.

The striker's superb piece of control to kill a long pass allowed him to cut inside from Roma's left channel, bringing the ball onto his stronger right foot, but he thumped his drive against the near post.

Lorenzo Pellegrini had earlier fired tamely at goalkeeper Casillas from the edge of the penalty area, while Porto's solitary attempt in the first 45 minutes saw Fernando force Antonio Mirante - deputising for the injured Robin Olsen, who was only on the bench – into a low save to his left.

Bryan Cristante worked Casillas with a rising drive early in the second half, but Roma's fire appeared to have fizzled out until Zaniolo struck, his initial poor touch inadvertently setting him up to shoot across Porto's veteran goalkeeper.

The midfielder's second - turned in with his left foot as the ball broke kindly into his path - delighted an otherwise nervy Stadio Olimpico crowd, though they fell silent soon after when Soares' attempt at an ambitious volley ended up setting up substitute Lopez.

Di Francesco gets much-needed boost

A positive result at home was just what Roma boss Eusebio Di Francesco needed, with the club's vocal fans still unhappy prior to kick-off following the 7-1 Coppa Italia humiliation to Fiorentina at the end of January.

They watched their team huff and puff to little effect until Zaniolo found the net twice in the space of six minutes, albeit conceding has left the tie in the balance.

As for Porto, they will just be pleased to still be alive going into the return fixture of their last-16 clash this year. A year ago, they were thrashed 5-0 at home by Liverpool in the first leg.

E-din shoulders above the rest

Zaniolo took centre stage with his brace, yet Dzeko was the architect for both goals during a performance that demonstrated just how crucial he is to a Roma side suffering with fragile confidence. He will feel unlucky not to have scored, denied twice by the woodwork.



About us

Betnumbers offers free daily bet tips on football (soccer) games all over the world with over 65% success rate.

© 2017 betnumbers.com all rights reserved

web design - XTD