Summer signings Javier Pastore, Davide Santon shine in Rome derby tune-up

As derby preparations go, it couldn't have been much better. Roma head into Saturday's clash with local rivals Lazio after finding their groove against an extremely accommodating Frosinone, who rolled out the red carpet for the Giallorossi and allowed their hosts to trample all over them.

Cengiz under got the ball rolling with a wonderful individual goal after just 90 seconds, and by the time Stephan El Shaarawy rolled in his side's third after just 34 minutes, Frosinone had long since given up the ghost.

Just six minutes before the smooth Javier Pastore had slotted home his second back-heeled goal of the season -- thanks to a lovely pass from the impressive Davide Santon on his first Roma start -- and knocked in their backsides by that double blow, the away side decided to not bother getting up again.

The rest of the match was a total stroll for Eusebio Di Francesco's side, who could knock the ball around without a care in the world and without having to worry about an opposition player trying to tackle them. Aleksandar Kolarov capped a decent display but lashing home the fourth just before the end, thanks to a scintillating burst down the left from promising debutant full-back Luca Pellegrini, who made an impression in his first eight Serie A minutes.

The crisis that had been enveloping Roma after a miserable start to the season has been held off, but Frosinone were so weak that it's too early to say that the troubled times are over. Give it three days and the dark clouds could be back again.


Four goals and no unnecessary drama. Roma also never let a poor side back into the game once establishing a solid lead and that sort of tranquillity has been missing since the start of the season. It was great to see Pastore running the attack like he should, as he was crucial in cutting down a team intent on closing up behind the ball. Hopefully Pellegrini lives up to his promise, as his performance in the dying minutes showed a left-back far from overawed at making his professional debut.


Given the trouble Edin Dzeko is having up front, it was a shame to see that Patrik Schick couldn't get the goal that would have got his season up and running. His venomously struck shot was somehow tipped onto the bar from close range just seconds before Pastore doubled his team's lead, and that was the only chance he had to get off the mark.

Manager rating out of 10

6 -- Di Francesco rightly shifted away from his preferred 4-3-3 formation and moved to a 4-2-3-1 that allowed Pastore to play in his preferred position behind the centre-forward. Meanwhile Daniele De Rossi, on his 600th Roma appearance, and Steven N'Zonzi happily mopped up the meagre efforts Frosinone mustered. Starting Schick was the right move given Edin Dzeko's recent funk, even though the Czech didn't score, as he provided some mobility and enthusiasm up top.

Player ratings (1-10; 10 = best. Players introduced after 70 minutes get no rating)

GK Robin Olsen, 5 -- Could have spent the night doing push ups behind his goal.

DF Davide Santon, 7 -- An assist on his first Roma start, which was characterised by some excellent pressing.

DF Kostas Manolas, 6 -- Had almost as little to do as Olsen.

DF Federico Fazio, 6 -- Let Andrea Pinamonti get his head to the one cross that caused Roma's defence problems but otherwise was sound.

DF Aleksandar Kolarov, 6 -- The Serb did what he had to do on the left and even put the cherry on the cake from midfield.

MF Daniele De Rossi, 6 -- A solid display to bring up his sixth century of Roma appearances.

MF Steven N'Zonzi, 6 -- Kept things ticking over in midfield and was left to do what he wanted by the away side.

MF Cengiz Under, 7 -- Calmed Roma's nerves with a great strike and laid the third on a plate for El Shaarawy. Lively.

MF Javier Pastore, 8 -- Another back-heeled goal and all the imagination that Roma have missed in attack.

MF Stephan El Shaarawy, 6 -- A simple tap-in and lots of enthusiastic running up and down the left flank.

FW Patrik Schick, 6 -- Couldn't believe that Marco Sportiello got a hand to his rasping first half shot. Confidence looks low.


DF Ivan Marcano, 6 -- Could have come on the pitch in his slippers, such was Frosinone's attitude in the second half.

MF Nicolo Zaniolo, 6 -- Played with the gusto of someone keen to wipe out memories of his debut in Madrid.

DF Luca Pellegrini, N/R -- A pleasant stroll for a promising young left-back.