The former Arsenal man became known more for frustrating misses than brilliant finishes during his time at the Emirates, departing north London over the summer for the Italian capital.
Yet In Serie A the Ivorian has enjoyed a renaissance under the tutelage Rudi Garcia – his former boss at Lille – playing a crucial role in the Giallorossi’s successful campaign to date.
Roma suffered their first loss with the Frenchman at the helm just over a fortnight ago to the Old Lady, surrendering their unblemished record and falling eight points back in the title race.
Tuesday’s Coppa Italia quarter-final matchup against Juventus gave the capital outfit a chance at swift revenge, however, and the Lupi were up to the task.
It was Gervinho that did the business – in some style, no less – producing a lovely flying back-heel effort 10 minutes from full time to send the Stadio Olimpico into raptures.
The 26-year-old’s spot of flair immediately drew comparisons with Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s ‘kung fu kick’ goal opposite Marseille in October 2012.
Manchester United miss Kevin Strootman and supposed enduring Red Devils target Miralem Pjanic featured in the build-up as the ex-Gunner propelled Roma into the semi-finals of Italy’s premier cup competition.
image: © Ronnie Macdonald