Roma enter the Europa League as defending Europa Conference League champions, beating Feyenoord in the final in May, and may be looking at this competition as a potential route to the Champions League. Jose Mourinho’s side aren’t doing too badly in Serie A, currently fifth with four wins, one draw and one defeat from their opening six games, but there appear to be a number of teams fighting for the top four places.
But Roma did not get off to a good start in the Europa League. Shortly after losing 4-0 to Udinese in Serie A, Roma travelled to Ludogorets and left with a 2-1 defeat, conceded a late winner from Nonato after Eldor Shomurodov had cancelled out Cauly’s opener.
There was defeat for Roma’s opponents, HJK Helsinki, in the opening gameweek too. The Finnish side were up against tough opposition in Real Betis and fell to a 2-0 loss, conceding a goal in each half, ending a six-match unbeaten streak.
Playing in a summer league, HJK finished top of the Veikkausliiga at the regular stage, taking an advantage into the championship round as they look to win the Finnish title for a record-extending 32nd time.
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Roma vs HJK Helsinki match stats
Mourinho may look to rotate in the Europa League once again especially as his side played in Serie A on Monday, meaning the likes of Tammy Abraham could start from the bench. One man who could still start, however, is Paulo Dybala who has had a good beginning at Roma, scoring three times in seven matches across all competitions.
Roma are currently unbeaten in their past 19 home games across all competitions, a run which dates back to February 2019, winning 13 and drawing six. Meanwhile, HJK lost all three of their away matches the last time they were in the Europa League, back in 2014/15.
This will be the first competitive meeting between Roma and Helsinki. Roma have faced Finnish opposition just once, knocking Ilves out of the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1991/92, while HJK have won one of their six games against Italian sides.