Valero expecting a challenge

Fiorentina midfielder Borja Valero has predicted a tough test when his team opens its Serie A campaign at Roma on Saturday evening.

Last Updated: 29/08/14 at 14:41

Borja Valero: Weary of newly strengthened Roma.

Borja Valero: Weary of newly strengthened Roma.

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

Roma have bolstered their ranks significantly with Ashley Cole, Juan Manuel Iturbe, Seydou Keita, Salih Ucan and Davide Astori among their new recruits.

"Roma can make life difficult to any team," Valero said. "They have made good quality signings and will battle for the Scudetto.

"We want to start the season in the best possible way but in order to beat Roma, we must play a perfect game."

Fiorentina coach Vincenzo Montella is set to hand Argentinian defender Jose Basanta and Australian midfielder Joshua Brillante their Serie A debuts against Roma.

The Viola finished fourth last season and will compete in the Europa League this term.

Roma fans hope the club's efforts in the transfer market this summer will help the team as they look to repeat last season's impressive campaign.

The Giallorossi finished runners-up to Juventus, losing just one league game at the Stadio Olimpico.

"We have been preparing for seven weeks and my team can't wait to play their first official game," Roma coach Rudi Garcia said. "The fact that we face a quality team like Fiorentina to start with is great.

"My job is to make sure my players maintain that hunger they had to win last season.

"We have had to strengthen our squad because we will play 22 games before Christmas and I must have at least two players in each position."

The Romans face a stern test on their return to the Champions League having been drawn in Group C alongside Bayern Munich, Manchester City and CSKA Moscow.

"It's going to be a very tough group," Roma captain Francesco Totti said. "Our rivals are very strong teams but it will be all the more fascinating to play against them."

Fiorentina will be without striker Giuseppe Rossi, who is out with a knee injury.

Juan Guillermo Cuadrado, reportedly a transfer target for Manchester United, will play in support of Mario Gomez in Fiorentina's attack.

Football365 Facebook Fan Page

The Football365 fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Serie A Fixtures

Saturday, 31 January 2015
14:00
Atalanta v Cagliari  
17:00
Genoa v Fiorentina  
19:45
Roma v Empoli  
Sunday, 01 February 2015
11:30
Sassuolo v Inter  
14:00
Cesena v Lazio  
Chievo v Napoli  
Palermo v Verona  
Torino v Sampdoria  
Udinese v Juventus  
19:45
AC Milan v Parma  

Footer 365

Manchester United U21s beat Liverpool 2-1 as Victor Valdes makes first appearance for the club

Goals from Nick Powell and Paddy McNair gave Manchester United's U21 side victory over Liverpool at Leigh Sports Village.

FA Cup: Giant-killers Bradford handed Sunderland or Fulham showdown in fifth round

Bradford's reward for knocking Chelsea out of the FA Cup is a fifth-round showdown with either Sunderland or Fulham.

Dutch FA president Michael van Praag to challenge Sepp Blatter for FIFA top job

Dutch FA president Michael van Praag is to stand against Sepp Blatter for the FIFA presidency.

Mail Box

You're Man Utd, For Crying Out Loud!

Defending a 0-0 draw with Cambridge on the grounds that other teams lost to lower-league opposition is not befitting of Man United. We're inclined to agree with Mailboxers...

A Massive Mailbox On A Weekend Of Wonder

We unsurprisingly have plenty of mails on a wonderful FA Cup weekend, including thoughts on Palace, Van Gaal, Phil Jones, Chelsea, Mourinho and Yaya Toure...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company