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Ivory Coast's Doumbia set for Roma debut over Gervinho

AFP , Saturday 14 Feb 2015
Doumbia Seydou
Doumbia Seydou (C) of Ivory Coast celebrates his goal against Guinea during their 2015 African Cup of Nations Group D soccer match in Malabo January 20, 2015 (Photo: Reuters)
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Seydou Doumbia is set to be handed his debut for Roma although fellow striker and countryman Gervinho could be left on the sidelines by coach Rudi Garcia for Sunday's home game against Parma.

Both Doumbia and Gervinho helped Ivory Coast secure their first African Cup of Nations title since 1992 following a penalty shoot-out with Ghana in last Sunday's final, but it is the former who could line up at the Stadio Olimpico.

Gervinho's return to the Italian capital was delayed by a bereavment in the family, according to reports. Despite flu-hit Francesco Totti now joining a growing absentee list, Garcia hinted Doumbia could make his first Giallorossi appearance following his recent signing from CSKA Moscow.

"No one is indispensable, the graveyards are full of indispensable people," said Garcia when asked whether Gervinho would make his long-awaited return to action for Roma.

He last played a league game days before Christmas when AC Milan held Roma to a scoreless draw.

"Gervinho is important but it's the team we need and, apart from during the Italian Cup recently, we've always managed to score goals.

"I'm not worried, we also have Doumbia. He's a little tired but he's ready, he is a striker and that is what we need."

Roma sit second in Serie A seven points behind leaders and champions Juventus, but last week's 2-1 win away to Cagliari brought an end to a four-game run of draws.

Although embattled Parma sit bottom of the pile with only nine points from 22 games, Garcia said there is no room for complacency.

"Tomorrow we have no choice, we have to go out there and win," added the Frenchman.

"Parma don't give up easily. They pushed Juventus all the way in the (quarter finals of) Italian Cup and we have to be fully focused."

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