Mario Gomez guns down Roma in Italian Cup quarter-finals
Two second half goals from German international Mario Gomez gave Fiorentina a 2-0 win over AS Roma in the Italian Cup quarter-finals on Tuesday and set up a last four meeting against Juventus.
Rome: Two second half goals from German international Mario Gomez gave Fiorentina a 2-0 win over AS Roma in the Italian Cup quarter-finals on Tuesday and set up a last four meeting against Juventus.
On a rain-soaked night at the Stadio Olimpico Fiorentina grabbed the opener, somewhat against the run of play on 65 minutes, following a sweeping counter-attack down the left wing.
Manuel Pasqual skillfully controlled a looping ball down the flank and his pin-point cross was met by Gomez who brilliantly flicked the ball past the despairing dive of Lukasz Skorupski and in off the post.
Then with time running out Gomez popped up again inside the penalty area, calmly created a yard of space, and then drove the ball high into the net on 89 minutes to put the result beyond doubt.
It took the 29-year-old German`s tally since January 21 to five goals in an emphatic return to form -- but for Roma the poor run goes on as this defeat follows four successive draws which has cost them ground in the title race with Juventus.
Fiorentina will meet Juventus in the first leg on March 4 in Turin.
Fiorentina won the last of their six Italian Cups in 2001.
The second semi-final will feature Lazio against either Napoli or Inter Milan, who meet on Wednesday.
Roma, who came into the tie second in Serie A and seven points behind Juventus, took the game to the visitors in a one-sided first half that reaped no goals.
The capital club generated nine shots at goal and three on target while Fiorentina, who lie sixth in the Italian top flight failed to muster a single shot on goal.
Romanian `keeper Ciprian Tatarusana was by far the busier of the two custodians and had to be alert on several occassions to deny Belgian midfielder Radja Nainggolan and Roma skipper Francesco Totti.
Fiorentina who began life without Colombian winger Juan Cuadrado, who signed with Chelsea on Monday, struggled to create sustained pressure on Skorupski in the home goal as Roma dominated possession as well as opportunities.
The match opened up after the break as both teams went looking for the winner but it was Gomez who was the hero with his two late goals.