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02-Apr 2019 Tuesday 3:11 PM (169 days ago)
harewlood34 and Brooklyn19  2 Likes  
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Serie A Roma vs Napoli: Ranieri’s Return

AS Roma vs Napoli

We’re back to business in Serie A this weekend and have a fascinating top of the table clash to enjoy.

Two former Chelsea managers come head to head when Serie A Roma vs Napoli at the Stadio Olimpico is the big Sunday game. Claudio Ranieri has taken up the helm at Roma, and he was the Chelsea boss at the very start of the Blues’ rise to the top of English football.

Napoli head coach Carlo Ancelotti was one of a procession of managers at Stamford Bridge over the last decade or so, leading them to a Premier League title in 2010. Both managers now have a big task in hand, back in their homeland. Napoli’s aim is to cement its second place in Serie A, and will have to wait another year to make an attack on Juventus’ grip on the Scudetto. Gli Azzurri’s hopes were all but ended when the Bianconeri executed a smash and grab in Naples in a game dominated by the hosts.

Ranieri’s task is a little more urgent. After a disappointing run of form I Giallorossi is in serious danger of missing out on a Champions League place and that would be a poor return.

 

 


 

 

Premier League

Talking Points

Can the Tinkerman work his magic in Rome?

Shortly after being sacked by Premier League strugglers Fulham, Claudio Ranieri landed the head coach role at Roma and I Giallorossi fans will hope his tenure more closely resembles his time at Leicester City. His most famous managerial achievement was to take the Foxes, a 5000-1 shot, to the Premier league title in 2016.

But his latest stint in England was rather less spectacular. He won just three of his 17 games in charge, as the expensively assembled Cottagers plummet towards the Championship.

This is Ranieri’s second stint at the Stadio Olimpico having managed Roma between 2009 and 2011, at the same time as his opposite number was in charge at Stamford Bridge. He’s a Roma fan and was delighted to get another chance this season having replaced the departing Eusebio di Francesco. But he couldn’t get a performance out of his players two weeks ago when they lost 2-1 to SPAL. And there are rumours of infighting, with strikers Edin Dzeko and Stephan El Shaarawy reported to have come to blows in the dressing room.

That sort of drama can go one of two ways; either it illustrates the passion and hurt they feel which they can channel into a fight against opponents on the pitch. Or they can carry on sulking.

That’s Ranieri’s first problem and he’ll have to solve it this weekend without his skipper Daniele de Rossi, out injured.

Napoli’s Nearly Men

Okay, it may be a little harsh to label Carlo Ancelotti’s talented squad of players as nearly men, but the hard facts remain that they were out of the two big competitions by the beginning of March.

Napoli crashed out of the Champions League, losing to Liverpool, and they are out of the Scudetto, some 15 points behind the Old Lady.

Serie A Roma vs Napoli: Can Arkadiusz Milik score against the host?
Arkadiusz Milik celebrates after scoring a goal

But Gli Azzurri has an array of gifted front runners and Arkadiusz Milik has taken centre stage this season, top scoring with 15 goals, which make him the fifth highest scorer in Serie A. The Pole has become a better finisher under Ancelotti and a good dead ball exponent, taking on the free-kick duties. That’s quite something when he’s alongside the likes of Captain Lorenzo Insigne and Dries Mertens who both have nine goals, matching Roma’s top scorer El Shaarawy

Mertens and Insigne have made eight and six assists respectively and that’s all good news for Milik and Ancelotti.

All eyes will be on Rome on Sunday, and we’ll be right there with Roma vs Napoli highlights hot off the press.

History

In the 39 game played since 1993, Roma has won virtually half with 19 victories to Napoli’s ten, and there have been ten draws.

Over the last five games the teams have been well matched, with two victories each followed by a draw in Naples back in October.

Roma has been strong at home, winning eight, drawing four and losing just once, but while Gli Azzurri has won only one in four on the road, they have conceded just two goals in five away games and only 12 all season.

Betting Tip

??

AS Roma vs Napoli Under 2.50 goals @ 2.13
March 31, 22:00 (GMT+8)

The Roma vs Napoli betting odds give us a good flavour of the balance in this game where all three results are very possible. Napoli is a marginal favourite at SBOBET odds of 2.33, with Roma at 3.00 and the draw at 3.25.

I think this will be a tight game. Napoli rarely conceded away from home and Ranieri will have already tightened up Roma’s rearguard.

I can see a one goal win, probably for Napoli, but don’t expect a goal rush.

A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR (??) BETS ARE WORTH:
?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 02-Apr-2019 at 3:13 PM


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02-Apr 2019 Tuesday 3:16 PM (169 days ago)            #2
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Serie A: Lazio Dare to Dream as Icardi Nears Return

Inter Milan vs Lazio

It was on the final day of the Serie A campaign last season that a meeting between these two sides had SBOBET fans on the edge of their seats.

A showdown to secure fourth place and the lucrative final spot in the Champions League.

As Serie A highlights go, coupled with the dramatic intervention of then Lazio player but Inter bound Stefan De Virj, it was pretty much as compelling as it could be.

There isn’t quite as much at stake ahead of this weekend’s clash in the San Siro but potentially it could be just as crucial come the end of the 2018/19 season.

 


 

 

Serie A

Talking Points

This time Inter hold the shots going into the encounter.

They currently sit in third place with a six point cushion over fifth placed Roma (the top four all qualify for next season’s UCL) and an eight point advantage over sixth placed Lazio – albeit Le Aquile have a game in hand.

They also return after the international break in confident spirits after overcoming injury woes to edge a thrilling Milan derby last time out – a result which lifted them above their city rivals in the table.

Moreover, influential skipper Mauro Icardi is on his way back.

Until earlier this week, the striker had not even trained with his teammates since he was stripped of the captaincy on February 13 - officially due to a knee injury, but intensive negotiations and an all-clear from the club doctor points to considerably more.

Although the reasons for his absence or fall-out – call it what you may – have not been revealed, now he is ready to return and that could only be good news for the Milan giants.

Yes, Inter have fared well without Icardi.

Indeed, since the Argentine’s last game against Parma, the team has won five, drawn two and lost two in all competitions. They have also scored 16 times in nine games without their top scorer and the pressure on the likes of Matias Vecino, de Vrij, Matteo Politano, Roberto Gagliardini and Ivan Perisic to provide the goal threat has been accepted.

Yet with Icardi returning, coach Luciano Spalletti will find a team which is fully aware it can operate without him but now have the benefit of him as an outlet.

Lazio know only too well about his talents.

He was the main man in a convincing win in their meeting earlier in the campaign and someone who has scored 53 times for the Nerazzurri in the previous two campaigns.

A win against Inter Milan would mark a turning point of the entire Serie A campaign for Lazio
Lazio's Danilo Cataldi celebrates scoring their third goal

This season he has nine goals in 18 Serie A starts, two in two in the Coppa Italia and four goals in six Champions League games.

For all the controversy which can surround him, he is an asset that most teams would miss.

Lazio know they need to realistically win in the San Siro to give themselves a chance of a top four finish.

They have been impressive of late with convincing victories over Roma and Parma, plus a draw at Fiorentina, yet realistically are still counting the cost of a miserable December which included draws with Chievo and Sampdoria and a defeat at surprise package Atalanta.

As Joaquin Correa put it though, Lazio “can dream” of a Champions League spot if they beat Inter at San Siro. “We need head and heart together.”

It’s all to play for this weekend.

History

As well as the last two victories mentioned – this season and on the final day of last – Inter have a fine record against Lazio.

Lazio have only won two of their last 10 meetings – a league double in the 2015/16 season – while Inter have tasted success in four of the last five clashes with Icardi scoring five times.

This corresponding fixture last term finished goalless.

Historically in the Italian top flight, Inter have won 63 times compared to 53 draws and Lazio’s 35 successes.

Their most famous meeting came in the 1998 UEFA Cup Final (now Europa League) in which Inter recorded a 3-0 victory.

Betting Tip

??

Inter Milan vs Lazio 1X2 draw @ 3.10
April 01, 02:30(GMT+8)

Inter start as favourites, available on 1X2 @ 2.35 with Lazio and the draw option both on offer @ 3.10.

With Asian Handicap betting, you can get odds on a home win of -0.50 @ 2.35 and on Lazio 0.00 @ 2.35.

In what is normally a game full of goals, over 2.75 goals will payout @ 2.25 and total goal 4-6 @ 3.80.

A repeat of Inter’s 3-0 triumph from earlier in the campaign is available on correct score @ 26.00

A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR (??) BETS ARE WORTH:
?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 02-Apr-2019 at 3:16 PM


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02-Apr 2019 Tuesday 3:18 PM (169 days ago)            #3
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Serie A: Napoli Wreck Ranieri’s Homecoming

AS Roma 1-4 Napoli

Three second half goals scored by a rampant Napoli side gave them a convincing Serie A victory over troubled Roma.

This fixture is normally one of the big clashes in the Italian league, but today it turned out to be a walk in the park for Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli. Roma fans have been hoping that the return of Claudio Ranieri as head coach would spark an upturn in their fortunes but this was a disastrous performance on their home turf.

According to the pre-match Roma vs Napoli betting odds this should have been a tight game with Napoli as a marginal favourite at  2.33, but having led for the vast majority of the game the three points were only briefly in doubt when Roma grabbed a first half injury time equaliser from the penalty spot.

Highlights of the game

Roma strikers Edin Dzeko and Stephan El Shaarawy had an almighty row after I Giallorossi lost to SPAL last time out. But they were kept apart today as there was no sign of El Shaarawy on the pitch or subs bench, and that made the home side look rather toothless.

Lorenzo Insigne has been an inspirational player for Napoli and he’s a driven man, still haunted by his penalty miss that handed Juventus a crucial win in a recent top of the table clash. But he too was absent in this game and that gave Jose Callejon the captain’s armband and Simone Verdi a starting place, and both stood up to the task admirably, Verdi in particularly putting in a superb performance.

There was a goal at either end of the first half  as Arkadiusz Milik latched on to a Verdi through ball and hammered his shot into the top right corner to give the visitors a second minute lead.

SBOBET Serie A fans expected Claudio Ranieri to spark an upturn in AS Roma
Claudio Ranieri gives indications in AS Roma's match against Napoli

The stadium fell silent and Ranieri looked crestfallen, and increasingly worried, as Verdi peppered the home goal with shots. Roma keeper Robin Olsen made a superb save late in the first half after Fabian Ruiz fed Verdi just outside the box and he rifled a shot towards the bottom corner. And that save looked all the more important when Napoli keeper Alex Meret pulled down Patrik Schick in the penalty area and the referee pointed to the spot.

Diego Perotti fired the spot kick coolly into the bottom right corner and the Stadio Olimpico came to life again.

The home fans must have hoped the equaliser, in the fourth minute of injury time, would give their side some momentum, but the outcome was quite the opposite. Napoli started the second half with great tempo and restored their lead just four minutes in. Captain Callejon crossed for Dries Mertens to fire his tenth league goal of the season home from close range. Napoli snatched a late point against Roma back in October, thanks to a Mertens strike but this game was an altogether more comfortable outing for Gli Azzurri. And the visitors went further ahead just five minutes later when they broke quickly and Simone Verdi took a pass from Fabian Ruiz to fire home his well deserved goal.

And that was that. Amin Younes still had time to make it 1-4, late in the game firing home with ease from a corner.

It was another bad day at the office for Roma.

Key statistics

The visitors satisfy Roma vs Napoli betting odds and win in Stadio Olimpico
Simone Verdi celebrates scoring in second half of Napoli's visit to Stadio Olimpico

Napoli ran out deserved winners having enjoyed the lion’s share of possession and winning the shot count by 20 to 14 with ten to three on target.

Milik’s early strike was his 16th league goal of the season.

Gli Azzuri used the ball brilliantly with a passing completion of over 90 per cent while the hosts completed 81 per cent of their passes. And it was a busy day for the referee, handing out six yellow cards, four to the frustrated hosts and two to Napoli.

I Giallorossi still lead the head to head Roma vs Napoli results in the 40 games played since 1993, but that will be scant consolation for their fans.

What’s next?

Next up, Roma has a home game against Fiorentina and then a visit to Sampdoria.

Neither will be easy. The Viola is in tenth and a dangerous opponent while Sampdoria is just two points behind Roma in seventh. These will be two good games for SBOBET Serie A fans to enjoy but testing for Ranieri.

Napoli has two games they expect to win, away to Empoli and then at home to Genoa, before taking on Unai Emery’s Arsenal in the Europa League.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 02-Apr-2019 at 3:18 PM


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08-Apr 2019 Monday 6:33 PM (163 days ago)            #4
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Serie A: Milan Must Turn Back The Clock

Juventus vs AC Milan

This weekend’s big Italian match takes place at the Allianz Stadium in Turin, where Serie A Juventus vs Milan are set to do battle.

It’s a clash of two of the most famous European clubs, both with a rich heritage, but in rather different places over the past few seasons. Milan has been going through a transition period while Juventus has dominated Serie A for almost a decade.

Napoli’s shock midweek defeat to Empoli left Juve needing just seven points from their last eight games to win the league yet again. Milan is the last team to beat the Old Lady to the league title, back in 2011, and dominated in the early nineties, winning four in five seasons. But that is a distant memory, and while the Bianconeri is homing on an amazing eighth successive Scudetto, Milan has a lot of work to do to hang on to fourth place, under intensive pressure from a group of chasers.

It promises to be a great game; so let’s take a look at the two teams and then work out where the value is in the Juventus vs Milan betting odds.

Talking Points

No Ronaldo…No problem

Cristiano Ronaldo has dominated the Serie A headlines this season, but the Bianconeri won the last seven Scudettos without him, and they’re coping pretty well since their top man limped off with a hamstring injury during Portugal’s Euro 2020 tie with Serbia.

Can Moise Kean continue to impress SBOBET fans?
Moise Kean scored in Juventus' last Serie A match against Cagliari

The main beneficiary has been Juventus’ latest prodigy Moise Kean. The 19-year old striker could become a world talent alongside Ronaldo, but he’s doing pretty well on his own, scoring four in his six appearances, including one in the 2-0 win over Cagliari this week. Kean suffered racist abuse during the game but responded in the best way, sealing the points with an 85th minute strike.

It’s probably too early to say Kean can be the striker the Azzurri have been waiting for but he’s made a great start and has an impressive list of admirers including Italy boss Roberto Mancini.

With Paulo Dybala and Sami Khedira facing late fitness tests, Max Allegri is sure to start his in-form youngster alongside Mario Mandzukic and they will present a serious challenge to the Milan backline.

Milan’s Momentum

Four teams are chasing Milan’s fourth place and they are all four points behind the Rossoneri, so there is a big incentive for Gennaro Gattuso’s men to battle to the last in search of at least a point against the reigning champions; not least because they have suffered a small blip following an impressive run of form.

A 3-2 defeat to Inter in a cracking Milan Derby was great for the Inter fans but it has rather stopped, or at least slowed, the Rossoneri’s Champions League charge. With Atalanta, Sampdoria and the two Rome clubs set to pounce there could be a feeding frenzy if Milan suffers another defeat, after a run of one point from three games, having also lost to Sampdoria.

 


 

 

Premier League

Suso could be the man to puncture the fearsome Bianconeri defence as Milan’s most creative player. The attacking midfielder has made eight assists as well as scoring five goals, and Polish striker Krzysztof Piatek has also hit a good run of form, scoring seven goals in ten league games since his January transfer from Genoa.

There may be a change in goal for Milan, as Gianluigi Donnarumma picked up an injury against Udinese so veteran stopper Pepe Reina looks set to deputise.

History

Milan really needs a result on Saturday to hold off the chasing pack, but the head to head Juventus vs Milan results won’t be a source of comfort for Gattuso’s men.

Milan hasn’t won any of its last seven meetings with Juve, in fact Max Allegri’s team has won 16 of the last 18 matches with the Rossoneri. But looking further back, Milan has won 19 and drawn 14 of the 66 meetings since 1993.

Juventus is unbeaten in 11 games at home and I suspect they will make it 12. Let’s take a look at the odds.

Betting Tip

??

Juventus vs AC Milan Juventus Asian Handicap -0.75 @ 2.00
April 7 00:00 (GMT+8)

Juventus is at 1.74 to win, with Milan at 5.40 and the draw available at 3.20.

So here at SBOBET we’re backing a home win with a -0.75 handicap. Yes, the Rossoneri will be right up for this game and the Bianconeri has the Scudetto pretty much in the bag. The hosts might also have the Champions League very much in mind after Ronaldo rescued his team from a two goal deficit to Altetico Madrid in the Round of 16.

But they have a young striker in Kean, bang in form and I think he may be the difference.

A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR (??) BETS ARE WORTH:
?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 08-Apr-2019 at 6:34 PM


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08-Apr 2019 Monday 6:41 PM (163 days ago)            #5
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Serie A: Juventus on the Brink!

Juventus 2-1 AC Milan

When Juventus can rest their star man Cristiano Ronaldo for a game of this magnitude, you know the Serie A title is in the bag.

I had a pre-match feeling SBOBET fans that the five-time Ballon D’Or winner may be on the bench, but coach Max Allegri didn’t include him in the squad altogether!

The midweek Champions League tie with Ajax was clearly on his mind but to not include CR7 from this giant of a fixture showed just how close Juve are to wrapping up the title early, even by their standards.

Make no mistake, with or without Ronaldo, the Serie A betting odds point one way and one way only.

Highlights of the game

Before kick-off, the Bianconeri had 26 wins, three draws and only one defeat - no team in Serie A history had built up an 18-point lead over the side in second place at this stage of the campaign.

It certainly seemed ominous for Milan, the last team to beat the Old Lady to the league title, back in 2011, and desperate to turn back the clock to better days.

Only 17 seconds had elapsed when visiting goalkeeper Pepe Reina flapped at a cross, before Milan countered and Krzysztof Piatek nodded wide in a high-tempo start.

The home side lost Emre Can midway through the first half as he was unable to shake off an early knock and it was encouraging to see the return of Sami Khedira in his first game since heart surgery.

Chances were at a premium and, although Franck Kessie scuffed a shot wide and Milan should have been awarded a penalty for an Alex Sandro handball, it was hard to see the deadlock being broken until Piatek did just that six minutes before half-time.

Krzysztof Piatek has stunned Allianz Stadium after scoring the opening goal AC Milan's Serie A match with Juventus
AC Milan's Krzysztof Piatek hits a goal during their Serie A match against Juventus at the Allianz Stadium

Leonardo Bonucci, who ‘expressed himself badly’ with his comments earlier this week regarding racist abuse suffered by team-mate Moise Kean, gave the ball away and the charging Tiemoue Bakayako played in the Pole who coolly picked his spot.

It was yet another one of the Serie A highlights from the talented frontman.

The half drew to a close in the same manner in which it had started, with Reina in action, although this time the Spanish goalkeeper – in for the injured Gianluigi Donnarumma – fingertipped a Mario Mandzukic volley away when it seemed Juve may level before the break.

Piatek called Wojciech Szczesny into action early in the second half as Milan chased a second to give them the cushion they so craved and to make amends for a day to forget earlier in the season.

A short time later, the lead was wiped out unnecessarily.

Mateo Musacchio mistimed a tackle on Paulo Dybala and the Argentine dusted himself up to send Reina the wrong way from the spot.

An hour played and game on.

Both sides pressed for a winner as it took desperate visiting defending to keep out Rodrigo Bentancur before Milan played in Piatek who ran out of pitch as he threatened to run clear.

Substitute Kean has the ball in the net but was adjudged to have fouled his marker in the build-up, while Frederico Bernardeschi fired wide as Juventus chased a winner.

But after a week in which he has endured some pretty rough treatment, it had to be the talented teenager who had the final say.

Six minutes were on the clock when Davide Calabria played the ball to the opposition and Miralem Pjanic intercepted and found Kean who finished with aplomb – a fifth consecutive goal for club and country.

If Napoli lose to Genoa tomorrow, Juventus will be crowned Italian champions for the eighth consecutive season.

Allegri remains on course to become the first-ever coach to win five successive Serie A titles (although he would still lag one behind Giovanni Trapattoni’s record total of seven).

The fat lady is all but singing – the old lady are on the brink of the title yet again!

Key statistics

Juventus are still able to beat the record points tally (102) they set in 2013-14 which they captured under Antonio Conte. They can also surpass Inter Milan’s all-time high of 15 away wins in a single season.

Juventus players wore black armbands in memory of Gianfranco Leoncini. The former Bianconeri player, who passed away yesterday, aged 79, played for the Turin club for 12 seasons.



CLICK HERE


 

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

 

UEFA - Champions League


This was the 31st different starting XI Allergi has named in 31 Serie A matches this term.

Juventus are unbeaten in seven Serie A home matches in which they were trailing at half-time (won three, drawn four), since a 4-1 defeat by Parma in January 2011 (when they were also 1-0 behind at the break).

Piatek has 10 goals in 13 matches for Milan.

What’s next?

Juventus now briefly put their title campaign to one side to face Ajax in the Champions League. Both legs of their quarter-final tie is sandwiched by a league encounter at lowly SPAL a week today.

Milan now host Lazio and then travel to Milan before hosting Lazio again in the second leg of the Coppa Italia semi-final with the score poised at 0-0.

 

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This message was edited by SBOBET on 08-Apr-2019 at 6:41 PM


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15-Apr 2019 Monday 2:03 PM (156 days ago)            #6
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Juventus Seeking To Clinch Serie A Title Against SPAL

S.P.A.L. 2013 vs Juventus

There may still be seven games left in the Serie A season, but Juventus are already right on the cusp of clinching another league title. They need just a point from this weekend's match away against SPAL 2013 to sew up their eighth consecutive Scudetto. Unsurprisingly, the Serie A 2019 odds favour the Bianconeri to take care of business and get the point they need to claim the title against their lowly foes. However, SPAL are still in the midst of a relegation battle themselves and will be looking to delay the champions' coronation for another week.

 


 

 

Talking Points

Dominant Juventus Juventus are strolling to yet another Serie A title. They're currently 20 points clear of second-placed Napoli in the table as they've simply laid waste to everyone in their path with relative ease. Just take their recent run, for instance. Despite missing superstar Cristiano Ronaldo for the past three Serie A matches, they haven't missed a beat. They've simply continued to rack up all three points en route to another championship. Teenage sensation Moise Kean has stepped up to fill Ronaldo's boots quite capably in the Portuguese's absence. He's scored in each of Juve's last three Serie A matches, which includes the winner in their 2-1 win over Milan. It's a testament to Juventus'  outstanding depth in their squad that they can continue to produce the results even without one of the very best players in the world. Of course, Juventus are still busy with their challenging quarter-final assignment against Ajax. Regardless of what happens in the first leg, they will likely look to rest their stars ahead of the second leg back in Turin to maximize their chances of progressing. That means there are going to be many changes to their squad against SPAL. But even a second-string Juve squad, which will likely include Kean in the starting XI, is still more than strong enough to get the point they need against SPAL -- and possibly more. SPAL still fighting for safety SPAL just about survived last year's Serie A campaign, their first for nearly a half-century. They finished 17th, three points clear of the relegation zone. They are once again battling relegation this season and are not yet secured a place in Serie A for next year. They are currently in 16th place, two points ahead of 17th-placed Bologna and four points clear of Empoli, who are in the final relegation spot. SPAL have given their hopes of survival a huge boost in recent weeks as they recently went on a three-match win streak. However, that winning run finally came to an end last weekend as they fell 2-1 at Cagliari. SPAL's home form this season has been nothing to write home about. They've won just four times in 15 games on home soil with six draws and five defeats while scoring a measly 14 goals.
Can SPAL stop Juventus’ early Serie A title celebration when they clash at Stadop Paolo Mazza
Andrea Petagna celebrates after scoring a goal.

Although, their Serie A 2019 results at home have finally picked up in recent weeks. During their three-match winning run, two of them were home wins over the top two Rome-based clubs in Roma and Lazio. Two Andrea Petagna penalties proved decisive in those games. Petagna has been SPAL's most prolific marksman with 12 goals this season. Midfielder Jasmin Kurtic has also come up with some timely strikes. Of his five goals this season, four have come at home.

History

SPAL  only made it back to Serie A in the 2017-18 season following a 49-year absence. Hence, they haven't had much experience facing off against Juventus. Juventus have won both meetings in Turin with relative ease. That includes a 2-0 win in their first meeting this season, which came in November. However, SPAL did hold Juventus to a 0-0 draw in their visit to the Stadio Paolo Mazza last season, which should give them confidence heading into this upcoming encounter.

Betting Tip

??

S.P.A.L. vs Juventus Under 2.25 Goals @ 1.87
April 13, 21:00 (GMT+8)
It's hard to see too many goals going in during this match. On the one hand, SPAL clearly don't have much firepower and have relied on penalties to score huge wins over big-name opposition. That sort of luck seems unlikely to continue against Juventus. Meanwhile, Juve will likely be fielding a somewhat weakened side following their Champions League quarter-final first leg against Ajax and might not be capable of completely thumping SPAL away from home. SBOBET odds have UNDER 2.25 goals priced at 1.87, which appears to be a wise wager to make considering the scenario the two teams find themselves in. Another intriguing bet is the draw, which is priced at 2.99. It's a result which benefits both clubs in the big picture since Juventus clinch their title while SPAL pick up another point toward safety.

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15-Apr 2019 Monday 2:05 PM (156 days ago)            #7
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Serie A: Milan and Lazio Battle for Pole Position

AC Milan vs Lazio

All roads lead to Milan for the game of the weekend in Italy’s Serie A, where Simone Inzaghi takes his Lazio side in pursuit of AC Milan in the chase for a Champions League place.

Serie A Milan vs Lazio is always a highlight of the season and this time it’s huge. As we head towards the finish line there are five teams within three points of fourth placed Milan. Lazio, in seventh, can catch the Rossoneri with a win on Saturday, but equally, a victory for Gennaro Gattuso’s men will deal a heavy blow to their visitors’ hopes.

Milan desperately needs the win too. The Rossoneri was in a handy position not long ago, but a return of just one point from the last 12 has sucked Gennaro’s men back into the chasing pack, level on points with Atalanta and just one ahead of sixth placed Roma.

It couldn’t be any tighter up there (outside the top three) and Saturday Night’s clash at the San Siro will be a battle of nerves as well as skill. The victors’ prize will be a timely boost ready for the final run-in.

Talking Points

Piatek can fire Milan to success

Gattuso made the signing of the mid-season when he secured the services of Polish striker Kryzsztof Piatek who had caught the eye having scored 19 goals in 21 games for Genoa. And since his 35m Euro switch he’s carried on scoring. He bagged his 21st league goal of the season in a 2-1 defeat to Juventus last week and that puts him right in the race for the Capocannoniere.

He’s gathering a head of steam, with ten goals from the last 13 games in all competitions, but he does need some help. Suso is Milan’s creative muscle, from the right wing or as an attacking midfielder, and Lazio needs to stop him if they are to cut the supply to Piatek.

Can the host secure positive Milan vs Lazio results?
Krzysztof Piatek has been performing great while playing for AC Milan

At the back, with the threat of Lazio’s Ciro Immobile to cope with, Captain Alessio Romagnoli is a key figure. The 24 year old has maturity beyond his years and has played with calm assurance since his arrival in Roma back in 2015. Milan has the players to take control of the race for fourth, do they have the nerve?

Lazio must regain momentum

The Biancoceleste has had a roller coaster of a season but has been on a decent run with three wins and two draws from the last six games, the only major blemish being a shock 1-0 defeat away to relegation candidates SPAL. But they would have hoped to do better than draw 2-2 at home to 11th placed Sassuolo last week, when they needed a 95th minute Senad Lulic equaliser to save a point after Immobile had put them ahead with a second half penalty.

That kind of defending will have Piatek pricking his ears up!

Before those last two games Lazio picked up ten points from 12 and they need to go on that kind of a run now to give themselves a chance of Champions League football next season. But Simone Inzaghi’s side is still counting the cost of a poor December when they failed to beat Chievo and Sampdoria, as well as losing to Atalanta.

Let’s take a look at the head to heads and the SBOBET odds now, and make a call for this big, big game.

History

The Milan vs Lazio results, since 1993, have been in the Rossoneri’s favour. In the 60 games played Milan has won 25 to Lazio’s 11, while there have been 24 draws.

And at the San Siro they have won 16, drawn 12 and lost just two over that period, unbeaten in the last four at home to the Biancoceleste.

The last four meetings have ended in a draw, three without goals, so we can expect a tight affair.

Without a win in four games this is by no means an easy target for Milan to get back on track.

Betting Tip

??

AC Milan vs Lazio AC Milan Draw no Bet @ 1.89
April 14 02:30 (GMT+8)

This is a game which could go either way, that’s for sure. Lazio arguably has the better recent form while Milan has that crucial home advantage.

The Milan vs Lazio betting odds have the Rossoneri slight favourites at 2.54 to win, with the visitors at 2.82 and the draw at 3.10.

A 1-1 draw is the most likely result at odds of 5.40, but I thing with Piatek’s firepower and a passionate San Siro crowd Milan may just have the edge.

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15-Apr 2019 Monday 2:09 PM (156 days ago)            #8
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Serie A: Lazio Pay the Penalty in Milan

AC Milan 1-0 Lazio

A late second-half spot kick coolly converted by Franck Kessie gave Milan a crucial three points in the day’s big Serie A clash against Lazio.

Milan and Lazio both needed to win this game in the battle to take the fourth Champions League place, and Roma’s earlier win over Udinese had put them in that coveted spot.

But after a hard-fought encounter, it's Gennaro Gattuso’s team which has edged ahead in the race and moved back above Roma into pole position.

Elsewhere, the other big Serie A 2019 news of the day was Juventus having to wait to celebrate another league title after a shock 2-1 defeat to SPAL. That wasn’t a result we expected here at SBOBET!

Highlights of the game

Milan are hoping to bring the good times back for their fans as they were the last team to beat Juventus to the Scudetto back in 2011. And the Rossoneri started the game on the front foot when Tiemoue Bakayoko passed to Fabio Borini, who saw his shot charged down.

Lazio quickly came back at their hosts. After Ciro Immobile teed him up, Luis Alberto fired towards the bottom corner but Jose Reina saved.

Ciro Immobile has missed to score during Lazio's 1-0 defeat against AC Milan in recent Serie A battle
Lazio star Ciro Immobile in action against AC Milan's Suso during a Serie A match at San Siro Stadium

It was a lively first half with Immobile in buoyant mood. He crossed for Joaquin Correa but the Argentine fired over. The Lazio keeper was then called into action when Franck Kessie fired one towards the bottom right corner, but Thomas Strakosha was equal to it.

Hakan Calhanoglu and top scorer Krzysztof Piatek both had efforts for the hosts. But it was Lazio which came within a whisker of taking the lead when Luis Alberto threaded a ball through the Milan defence and Immobile hit the post with his effort.

The Biancoceleste came out for the second half the brighter of the two teams. Lucas Leiva came very close with his right foot shot from a Luis Alberto corner.

On 71 minutes Bakayoko had a good chance to put the hosts in front when he met a Calhanoglu corner, but his header flew past the right-hand post. And then the drama hit fever pitch with 15 minutes remaining.

First, it looked like the big moment had arrived when the referee pointed to the penalty spot after the ball struck Francesco Acerbi on the hand. But the groans echoed around the San Siro when VAR cancelled the on-field decision.

But while the Milan fans still cursed their luck, another chance came. Mateo Musacchio was impeded by Lazio’s Riza Durmisi and the ref gave the penalty again.

This time there was no VAR and Kessie stroked home the spot kick into the bottom right corner to send the fans into ecstasy.

That goal seemed to settle the hosts, who looked like adding another goal. Suso brought out a great save from Strakosha when his shot flew towards the top corner, and Patrick Cutrone came close with an effort deep into injury time.

But one goal was enough and Milan’s march is back on.

Key statistics

The Rossoneri edged the first half with 56 per cent possession and ten shots to eight. That pattern continued in the second half with the shot count finishing at 19 to 12 to the hosts in a game they just about deserved to win.

It was a big victory for Gattuso’s men and one which means the Serie A 2019 betting odds have Milan in a great position to grab that fourth spot.



CLICK HERE


 

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 




The Rossoneri have now won 26 to Lazio’s 11 in the head to heads and has lost just two in 31 against the Biancoceleste at the San Siro.

And crucially for the hosts, it ends an edgy run of four games without a win, and to achieve that against a direct rival makes it so much better.

What’s next?

These two teams meet in the Coppa Italia semi-final in a week and a half, and that is bound to be another close affair after a 0-0 draw in the first leg.

But in the meantime, the chase for fourth spot continues. Milan are away to Parma next week. Their opponents are in 15th place and are still not safe from relegation.

Lazio manager Simone Inzaghi needs to pick his players up. This was a hard-fought game and with a little luck, they would have come away with a result.

They are still in the hunt and have a chance to make up ground when they play their game in hand against 16th placed Udinese. They then have another big opportunity to pick up points at home against bottom club Chievo.

 

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22-Apr 2019 Monday 1:24 PM (149 days ago)            #9
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Serie A: Inter Look to Derail Roma’s Top 4 Hopes

Inter Milan vs Roma

Inter Milan appear to have third place all locked up. They're five points clear of crosstown rivals AC Milan with just six games left in the Serie A season.

Meanwhile, fifth-placed Roma are engaged in a fierce battle with Milan, who recently got a big win against Lazio, for that final Champions League place.

Inter can do their rivals a big favour by slowing down Roma when they meet this weekend. But the Giallorossi appear to be getting their act together at the back and have a habit of being a thorn on Inter's side when they visit the San Siro.

Talking Points

Impact of Icardi's return

It's been three games since Mauro Icardi returned to the line-up following a lengthy absence, and he's made quite an impact on Inter's Serie A 2019 results.

Icardi registered a goal and an assist in his first game back as Inter beat Genoa, 4-0. They then drew 0-0 at home against high-flying Atalanta, which is a positive result. And Icardi had an assist and should've scored at least another goal last time out in Inter's 3-1 win against Frosinone.

It's just a fact that Inter are a better team with Icardi on the field. The Argentine is arguably their best player, and his mere presence attracts so much attention from opposing defences.

Inter do have decent attacking talent from midfield, with the likes of Roberto Gagliardini, Matias Vecino, Radja Nainggolan, and Ivan Perisic capable of chipping in with goals. And with Icardi around, they have a bit more room to operate and support in attack.

Inter haven't scored in their last three home games, two of which were without Icardi. But with Icardi finally back, Inter's chances of snapping that goal drought against Roma should increase significantly.

Icardi scored in Inter's 2-2 draw against Roma in their first meeting this season back in December. He's now scored four goals in his last four games against the Giallorossi.

Roma turning a corner?

It was a rocky first few games for manager Claudio Ranieri in his second stint at Roma. After winning his first game against Empoli, Roma then proceeded to lose to newly-promoted SPAL and got thrashed 4-1 by Napoli at home.

They also drew 2-2 at home against Fiorentina, which isn't a great result considering Fiorentina's recent struggles.

But Roma have finally shown some signs of improvement lately. They've scored back-to-back 1-0 wins over Sampdoria away and Udinese at home, which have done their Serie A 2019 odds of claiming fourth a lot of good.

It's the first time Roma have kept back-to-back clean sheets in Serie A, which is indicative of just how porous they've been at the back all season.

 

Ranieri is renowned for his ability to organise his teams' defence. While he was unable to save Fulham this season, his exploits in leading Leicester City to the most improbable Premier League title ever will go down in history.

However, Roma suffered a big blow after Daniele De Rossi had to go off due to injury against Udinese. The Roma captain will almost surely miss the Inter clash, and possibly even the rest of the season.

De Rossi's leadership will be a big loss, especially at the back. It remains to be seen if Roma can continue their renewed solidity without their captain at the San Siro.

History

Serie A: Claudio Ranieri's Roma are set to face Inter Milan
Roma manager Claudio Ranieri giving instructions to his players from the touchline

The recent history between Roma and Inter has been pretty evenly matched. Over their last 10 Serie A meetings, each team has won three times, with four draws.

Inter haven't beaten Roma in their last two meetings at the San Siro. In fact, Inter have had a lot of problems over the years when Roma have visited. They've won just three of their last 13 meetings at home, with five Roma wins, and five draws.

Betting Tip

??

Inter Milan vs AS Roma AS Roma 1X2 @ 4.20
April 21, 02:30 (GMT+8)

This is quite a tough match to call. While both Inter and Roma have had some promising performances of late, they have not exactly been able to maintain much consistency. However, there's a decent case to made for Roma getting the win.

For one, they have had a good deal of success over the past few years against Inter at the San Siro. Moreover, Inter's recent home form has been very shaky; they've won two, lost two, and drawn two of their last six at the San Siro. Roma are also the more motivated of the two as they chase that final Champions League spot.

SBOBET odds have a Roma win priced at 4.20, which would net quite a handsome return if Claudio Ranieri's side can continue its winning run.

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22-Apr 2019 Monday 1:27 PM (149 days ago)            #10
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Serie A: The Final Countdown

The Serie A title is all done and dusted, though Juventus’ Scudetto celebrations were delayed by a shock defeat to SPAL last weekend, a result which defied SBOBET tips and stunned the Italian football mad world.

But only briefly.

The race for the title has been over for some time and so our remaining Serie A 2019 predictions will be casting a gaze a little lower down the table.

Champions League Hunt

Napoli looks to have second place wrapped up and that’s good news for Carlo Ancelotti’s side which, having exited the Champions League now looks like going out of this year’s Europa League after losing a first leg tie 2-0 to Arsenal.

Inter Milan is in third place but by no means clear of the chasing pack, just six points above fifth placed Roma and Inter fans will have a close eye on the form of city rivals AC Milan, currently occupying that invaluable fourth spot. But with the quality of Ivan Perisic and the fighting spirit of Radja Naingollan in the side I see Inter staying in the top four. Mauro Icardi is also back in the fold and scoring again.

The Rossoneri had a vital 1-0 win over Lazio on Saturday thanks to a late Franck Kessie penalty. And that ended a sequence of four games without a win. Meanwhile, Claudio Ranieri’s return to Roma gave their fans hope that the fourth spot would be in their grasp, but a 1-4 home reversal to Napoli cast doubts over that. Subsequent back-to-back wins have hauled Roma back into the chase. But an away fixture against Inter Milan will be a serious test next week. Lose that and I see the Champions league drifting away from Rome.

Atalanta has been a surprise package. Gian Piero Gasperini has a young side but the midfield nous of Josip Ilicic and the goals of Duvan Zapata have kept them up among the elite. But drawing a blank at home to Empoli on Monday was a disappointment and they look likely to settle for a Europa League place.

Torino and Lazio are just outside the top six, but well in touch and a winning run for either could see them make a late challenge. They face each other on the last day of the season and will be delighted if they are still in with a chance at that point.

Can Krzysztof Piatek shocked Serie A 2019 predictions and win this season's Capocannoniere?
Krzysztof Piatek celebrates scoring goal for AC Milan in their match against Udinese

Sampdoria is an outside bet to reach a Europa League place especially if Fabio Quagliarella continues his hot streak in front of goal.

Prediction: Both Milan sides to stay in the top four with Lazio beating Roma to fifth place.

Relegation Battle

Chievo has had a wretched season and has been doomed for some time, and looks likely to be joined by Frosinone, though Marco Baroni’s side hasn’t yet given up the ghost. Back to back wins have just about kept Frosinone in touch but still with a mountain to climb. And defeat at home to Inter at the weekend, though expected, was a blow.

The battle to avoid the other relegation place has seen Udinese, Empoli and particularly Bologna picking up wins; and that means SPAL, Parma and Genoa are still in danger.

SPAL’s win over Juventus was the Serie A 2019 news of last weekend and a huge bonus for Leonardo Semplici’s side; and he’ll hope the goals of Andrea Petagna can keep his battlers up; he has 12 goals to his name so far. And his team has a crunch match away to Empoli next week, whose confidence is on the up on the back of an impressive draw with Atalanta on Monday.

Prediction: Empoli to just fall short and join Chievo and Frosinone in Serie B

Capocannoniere

The battle to win Serie A’s mantle of top scorer, or ‘head gunner’ is really heating up into a four way tussle. There were many predicting that Cristiano Ronaldo would walk away with this title, but he’s currently behind Atalanta’s Duvan Zapata, Milan’s Krzysztof Piatek, and Sampdoria’s Fabio Quagliarella. At 36 years old, the evergreen Quagliarella is two years older than Ronaldo, and he is tied at the top on 21 goals with in-form Piatek.

The Pole joined Milan from Genoa mid season, and his goals are a big reason why the Rossoneri is in with a good shout of Champions League football next year. But Cristiano Ronaldo simply loves to win titles, and with the Scudetto as good as won and the Champions League no longer in mind, after defeat to Ajax, Juve’s main man will have his eye on this one.

Prediction: Piatek and Ronaldo to share the Capocannoniere …if Juve’s superstar stays fit.

 

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22-Apr 2019 Monday 1:29 PM (149 days ago)            #11
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Serie A: Roma Miss Big Chance to Control Top 4 Race

Inter Milan 1-1 AS Roma

Roma had a golden opportunity to reclaim control of the race for the fourth and final Champions League spot in Serie A. They knew from earlier Serie A 2019 results that Milan had drawn with Parma, which meant that a win against Inter at the San Siro would see them overtake the Rossoneri.

However, the Giallorossi failed to capitalise and gain valuable ground as they could only draw with Inter after Ivan Perisic cancelled out Stephan El Shaarawy's superb opener.

While the title has already been decided, SBOBET Serie A fans still have this exciting race for the Champions League between Milan, Roma, Torino, Atalanta, and Lazio to look forward to in the final five matchdays of the season.

Highlights of the game

Roma came out of the gate on the front foot. Edin Dzeko had the first real chance of the game in the third minute as he collected a ball from Aleksandar Kolarov near the centre of the penalty area. However, he got his attempt to shoot with the outside of his right foot all wrong, which allowed Samir Handanovic to save comfortably.

Dzeko and Kolarov once again combined for another decent chance for Roma minutes later. Dzeko set up Kolarov for one of his trademark long-range strikes at the edge of the penalty area, but the full-back's effort flew just wide.

Inter finally hit back with the first big chance of their own in the eighth minute. Lautaro Martinez, who was given the start over Mauro Icardi by Luciano Spalletti, rose high to get on the end of a Matteo Politano cross. His header forced a brilliant save from Roma keeper Antonio Mirante, who got low and pushed the ball off the post before it could cross the line.

Ivan Perisic prevents Inter Milan from being beaten by hitting a goal during their Serie A match against Roma
Inter Milan's Ivan Perisic celebrates with teammates after scoring an equaliser against AS Roma

Ivan Perisic then had the chance to line up a shot on the rebound, but his attempt was blocked and flew harmlessly away from goal.

Roma finally broke the deadlock in the 14th minute through Stephan El Shaarawy. After collecting a pass on the left wing, El Shaarawy cut inside and unleashed a magnificent strike that gave Handanovic no chance.

Inter's best chance to equalise in the first half fell to Politano, who launched a hopeful strike from outside the box following a corner. Mirante couldn't handle the shot, though, and spilt it inside the six-yard box. Matias Vecino was the first one to the rebound, but Federico Fazio's last-ditch challenge helped force the Uruguayan midfielder's shot to sail high.

Just three minutes after the restart, Inter created another chance from a corner as Martinez got on the end of another Politano cross. This time, though, Mirante caught the header and held on with no problem.

 But minutes later, Roma came close to doubling their advantage. Nicolo Zaniolo, who came on as a second-half substitute, laid the ball off to a charging Lorenzo Pellegrini, who disappointingly sliced his shot wide.

Roma would be left to rue that miss as Perisic equalised right after the hour mark. After some patient passing from Inter, Danilo D'Ambrosio delivered a pinpoint cross to the Croatian, who made no mistake with his diving header.

Perisic had another opportunity to give Inter the lead just four minutes later. However, he was unable to get his free kick on target.

The hosts had one last chance to steal the win through Martinez, but the Argentine's acrobatic shot went well over.

Key statistics

Inter and Roma have now drawn each of their last three meetings in Serie A. Moreover, Roma have gone undefeated in their last four visits to the San Siro against Inter (one win, three draws).




Inter will be disappointed they didn't snap that winless run against Roma this time around. They dominated the match, grabbing 72 per cent of possession and outshooting the Giallorossi, 21-9. But despite that shot disparity, both clubs still ended up with five shots on target each.

What's next?

Inter have another home match coming up as they host Juventus, who just clinched their eighth straight  Scudetto, at the San Siro in the Derby D'Italia next weekend. The Nerazzurri will surely be eager to put a damper on their fierce rivals' title celebrations.

As for Roma, they continue their hunt for Champions League football as they host mid-table Cagliari at the Stadio Olimpico next week. The Serie A betting odds should favour them to collect all three points in that match.

And with Milan travelling to sixth-placed Torino, the Giallorossi will have another great shot to grab fourth spot.

 

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29-Apr 2019 Monday 2:09 PM (142 days ago)            #12
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Serie A: What a Chance for Inter!

Inter Milan vs Juventus

We have another classic game at the top of Serie A this weekend when Juventus travels to Milan to face Inter in the Derby d’Italia.

As all SBOBET football fans know, the sight of the Old Lady, Scudetto winner for the eighth successive season, strikes fear across the league. But this week’s Inter Milan vs Juventus odds tell a slightly different tale.

Luciano Spalletti’s Inter are favourites to win on Saturday, but that is all about motivation, as Juve arrives in Milan with the league title in the bag and with no other unfinished business, out of the major cups and maybe even heading for the beach. Don’t expect Max Allegri’s men to rollover though; that would be sacrilege for the Bianconeri, but Inter has so much more at stake.

This is a huge game for the Nerazzurri, sitting third in the Serie A league table and with a five point cushion to Milan in fifth, but with Atalanta and Roma also in the hunt, a loss at the San Siro could bring the chasing pack much closer.

There’s always pride to play for and intense rivalry in one of Italy’s most famous old fixtures, but for Inter, it’s all about staying safe in that third place.

 


 

 

Talking Points

Mauro’s time to shine

With ten goals to his name you could say Argentine striker Mauro Icardi has had a relatively quiet season, but that isn’t the whole story…by some way! Icardi has been surrounded by controversy, much of it the making of his wife and agent Wanda Nara, who’s contract negotiations resulted in him being stripped of the captaincy in February.

It has been more like a soap opera than Serie A 2019 news at times in Milan, but things have settled, just in time for the business end of the season. Icardi has been welcomed back into the fold and started from the bench in a crucial 1-1 draw with Roma last week. But I expect him to start against Juventus, ahead of Lautaro Martinez, with the stakes so high.

Alongside players with the quality of Ivan Perisic and Radja Nainggolan the striker would have plenty of ammunition, and I think Inter will be on the attack for much of this contest.

Perisic has been productive, scoring seven goals and having four assists and he could be another key man in Inter’s search for goals.

Bianconeri has nothing to lose

Juventus are the 2018-19 Serie A champions
Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri celebrates winning the league after the match

 

A surprise quarter final exit from the Champions League at the hands of a resurgent Ajax team has left the Bianconeri with a rather lighter schedule than they’d hoped for. They won their eighth successive Scudetto last week with a 2-1 win over Fiorentina which took them 20 points clear of Napoli.

The only incentive remaining is Allegri’s team is to match the record 102 point haul achieved by Juventus under Antonio Conte. Five wins from five will do it, but will that be enough motivation for the visitors?

Well, already out of the Coppa Italia, Allegri can afford to field his strongest available team, and that means Cristiano Ronaldo can continue his fight to become the Serie A top scorer in his first season in Italy. He’s currently on 19, three behind Sampdoria’s Fabio Quagliarella, but Ronny can score three in a half, so there’s plenty of time to go.

But Juve does have a few injuries with Giorgio Chiellini and Mario Mandzukic out, and another striker Paulo Dybala doubtful.

History

Juve has won 26 of the 58 Derby d’Italias since 1993; with Inter winning 13, and 19 have been drawn.

The Bianconeri won the return match 1-0 earlier in the season and has an impressive away record, winning 13, drawing one and losing two. But Inter arrives in good form, with eight points from four games and a realistic chance of beating the 32 times Serie A winners.

Betting Tip

??

Inter Milan vs Juventus 2-3 goals @ 1.90
April 28, 02:30 (GMT+8)

Inter is the team which needs to win this game and will start as favourites against the champions, at odds of 2.41 while the Bianconeri is at 3.00 and the draw is 3.10.

The Derby d’Italia is one of the big fixtures in the Italian sporting calendar and this one is sure to live up to expectations, not least because a normally cagey affair is likely to be a more open match, Juve playing with freedom while Inter attacks with intensity.

I suspect the Nerazzurri may just win it by the odd goal in three, but with a decent case for both sides, and with Juve’s undoubted class I think it’s safer to predict two or three goals!

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29-Apr 2019 Monday 2:37 PM (142 days ago)            #13
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Serie A: Torino’s Chance to Join the Party!

Torino vs AC Milan

AC Milan heads to the Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino on Sunday for a huge test in its campaign to bring Champions League football home for its supporters.

The passionate Rossoneri fans will swarm up to Turin for this crucial Serie A clash hoping they can get a result and preserve their top four place. But it’s mighty close at the top and seventh placed Torino can draw level with Milan with a win.

It Toro have exceeded expectations this season and, while they remain outsiders for Champions League qualification, they would certainly have accepted this position at the start of the season. Meanwhile the Rossoneri has been misfiring a little recently, and this clash represents a great chance for Torino to join the elite party.

 

opacity 0

 

 

Talking Points

Torino on the up

Eight points from four matches has lifted Walter Mazzarri’s team into contention, much to the surprise of many pundits in the Italian game. The Torino boss has put together a nicely balanced team, with a solid defence and a dangerous attacking threat. After a difficult period with injury, striker Andrea Belotti has had a new lease of life and has now hit 12 goals which place him in the top ten strikers in the league.

Meanwhile Il Toro has one of the meanest defences in the league and that’s some achievement in Serie A. In fact, only champions Juventus and third placed Inter Milan have conceded fewer. Wing back Cristian Ansaldi is a threat going forward too, scoring the winner in last week’s victory over Genoa.

Torino will be without the suspended Simone Zaza but midfield player Tomas Rincon adds real bite to this team, picking up 14 yellow cards so far this season…impressive!

Milan under pressure

AC Milan will be low on confidence when they take on Torino in Serie A after Coppa Italia elimination
AC Milan's Krzysztof Piatek reacts during their match vs Lazio

The latest Serie A 2019 betting odds suggest Milan is still the favourite to take that fourth spot, but the Rossoneri is clinging on at the moment, ahead of fifth placed Atalanta only courtesy of a better head-to-head record this season. Defeat on Sunday would see their odds drift.

And they come into this clash with the disappointment of crashing out of the Coppa Italia in midweek, failing to beat Lazio. Gennaro Gattuso needs to keep his players calm and that won’t be easy in the Turin hotbed.

Milan has the firepower to stay in control of its own destiny. Krzysztof Piatek is in the race for the Capocannoniere and the Pole has been big Serie A 2019 news since his move from Genoa on a four and a half year deal. It’s been a great move for the Rossoneri and his goals could help them over the line.

The influential Suso has made nine assists so far and Piatek will rely on the gifted Spaniard for much of his supply. And Gattuso will be pleased to welcome Lucas Paqueta back from injury. The Brazilian attacking midfielder could also feature in Sunday’s match day squad.

The Rossoneri held its nerve to pull off a crucial 1-0 league win over Lazio thanks to a late Franck Kessie penalty two weeks ago, and that’s just the sort of composure Gattuso will be looking for in Turin.

History

The head to heads could hardly be more one-sided. Torino has only managed to beat Milan once in the last 33 meetings. But they have drawn 16 while the Rossoneri has picked up 16 victories.

More recently, the last four games have all been draws, two of the last three goalless, and so the latest SBOBET odds will make a prediction of a tight affair.

Torino has been stronger at home, unbeaten against Milan is the last five meetings and they have won six of the last eight home league matches.

And Milan will have to be at their best to breach Il Toro’s defence, which has conceded just 16 goals in 16 home games. The Rossoneri has failed to win any of its last three away games and has a modest away record this season, winning five, drawing seven and losing four.

Betting Tip

??

Torino vs AC Milan Under 2.25 goals @1.83
April 29, 02:30(GMT+8)

With Torino at 2.84 to win and Milan at 2.61 this match couldn’t be much closer to call. The draw is at 2.99 and that looks a likely outcome. Gattuso would be marginally the happier of the coaches with that result, but it could mean both teams losing ground, and I think they’ll both be aiming for a win in a tight game.

But in each case, four of their last five league games have yielded two goals or fewer, so a bet on the defences dominating makes a lot of sense.

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29-Apr 2019 Monday 2:42 PM (142 days ago)            #14
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Serie A Inter Milan vs Juventus: Derby D’Italia Spoils Shared

Inter Milan 1-1 Juventus

The second Serie A Inter Milan vs Juventus matchup of the season didn't have all that much left at stake for either team. Juve have already wrapped up their eighth consecutive Scudetto, while third-placed Inter have all but secured a Champions League spot.

However, the Derby D'Italia is always a closely contested affair, and it proved to be once again as the two rivals played to a hard-fought draw. Cristiano Ronaldo's milestone 600th goal cancelled out Radja Nainggolan's spectacular opener for Inter.

Most Inter Milan vs Juventus predictions likely foresaw that result since neither team had much to play for. But still, the two rivals produced an exciting encounter that was worthy of the hype that surrounds this huge derby between the two Italian giants.

Highlights of the game

Mauro Icardi and Inter Milan were held to a 1-1 draw by Juventus in Serie A
Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi reacts during a recent Serie A match

Inter Milan started on the front foot at home as Matteo Politano delivered an in-swinging cross into the Juventus penalty area. Juventus' Leonardo Bonucci was the one who made contact, but his header went wide for a corner.

And on the ensuing corner, Juve were unable to completely clear the ball. Politano's looping pass made its way to Radja Nainggolan on the edge of the box, and the bruising Belgian hit an absolutely sweet volley which arrowed into the bottom corner. As far as Inter Milan vs Juventus highlights go, this one is obviously right on the top drawer.

But as good as Nainggolan's strike was, Juventus keeper Wojciech Szczesny will be somewhat disappointed he didn't do a better job of keeping the ball out after getting an arm on it.

Juventus attempted to hit back in the 10th minute as Giorgio Chiellini had his own long-range effort from the edge of the box. However, his somewhat awkward strike did not trouble Samir Handanovic.

The Nerazzurri nearly doubled their lead minutes later through main man Mauro Icardi. But Szczesny was equal to the Argentine's attempt as he tipped the ball over.

Inter had an even better chance on the ensuing corner. A good cross found defender Stefan de Vrij, who delivered a strong header which Szczesny once again stopped and gathered before Inter could pounce on the rebound.

The home side created another decent opportunity off a corner. A Chiellini header ricocheted off de Vrij and onto the path of Icardi just on the edge of the six-yard box. His shot was blocked by Blaise Matuidi, though, and Chiellini eventually smuggled it away for another corner.

Cristiano Ronaldo continued to look for an equaliser for Juve, and he nearly got it on the hour mark. He connected on a Joao Cancelo cross, but his shot was blocked and claimed by Handanovic.

The Portuguese superstar wasn't to be denied in his next chance, though, as he finally drew Juve level. After a clever backheel by Miralem Pjanic set him up, Ronaldo launched a fierce shot at the edge of the box which gave Handanovic no chance.

Inter had one more shot to grab all three points as Ivan Perisic and Mauro Icardi worked a one-two inside the penalty area. But the Croatian's shot was pushed over the bar by Szczesny to help the champions preserve a draw in the derby.

Key statistics

Ronaldo's equaliser will go down in history as it was the 600th goal of his club career. He scored a good portion of those goals -- 450 to be exact -- during his time with Real Madrid. He had 118 at Manchester United and five at Sporting Lisbon.

Ronaldo has now scored 27 goals in his first season for Juventus, 20 coming in the league. He's now just two goals back of Fabio Quagliarella for the Capocannoniere, the award given to Serie A's top scorer, with four matches to go.

As for Inter, they've extended their current unbeaten run to five games. Curiously, though, they've won both away games and drew all three games at home during that stretch. But it should be noted that those three games were against three of the top-six teams: Atalanta, Roma, and Juventus.



CLICK HERE


 

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 



What's next?

Inter will look to extend their unbeaten streak to six games as they visit Udinese next weekend. But Udinese are still just four points from the relegation zone and will be desperate to secure safety for next season.

As for Juventus, the champions have another derby to prepare for next week as they host city rivals Torino for the Derby della Mole. Torino, who will next face AC Milan, are still in the race for a Europa League spot, and SBOBET tips that match to be a very interesting one.

 

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16-May 2019 Thursday 12:36 PM (125 days ago)            #15
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Serie A: The Champs Visit the Underachievers

AS Roma vs Juventus

As Serie A campaigns go, 2018/19 has been a major disappointment for the club from the eternal city.

Not for six years have I Giallorossi finished outside of the top three.

This time they are hanging into sixth spot by a fine margin knowing that any slip-ups in their three remaining matches could see them fail to qualify for Europe next term altogether.

True, SBOBET fans – they have lost their best players over successive summers with Mo Salah, Alisson and Radja Nainggolan all departing.

But should they not make it, it would emerge as one of the Serie A news shocks of the season.

 


 

 

Talking Points

After a miserable March, which included heavy defeats to Lazio and Napoli, not to mention an embarrassing defeat to SPAL, at least results have improved of late.

Good job for them too as Claudio Ranieri’s men welcome the runaway champions to town.

Ranieri has done a decent job since he was brought in as caretaker boss after Eusebio Di Francesco was sacked, winning four and drawing three of his nine matches back at the helm.

However, whether he guides them into Europe or not, the 67 year-old has confirmed this week he will leave the club at the end of the season.

As he prepares to meet one of his former clubs, Ranieri will know his side cannot afford a defeat with Torino and Lazio hot on their heels.

Win, of course, and the dream of scraping into the final Champions League qualifying spot in fourth place remains alive.

Roma dropped points at the death against Genoa last time out, not the first time they have dropped points in recent weeks, and naturally will be keen to avoid doing so again.

Many of their supporters have made it clear where they point the finger of blame, however.

This week they displayed a banner calling for President James Pallotta to leave the club.

The banner, which read - “A thousand dreams and a flat refusal [of] your project. Get out,” - was put up outside Roma’s training ground in Trigoria during the night, although was later taken down.

The team is to end another season trophyless, after early exits in the Champions League and Coppa Italia, and to add insult to injury, it’s reported the club was recently rejected by Antonio Conte as it looks for new suitors.

Claudio Ranieri's Roma have the best scoring record on home soil in Serie A with 39 goals
Claudio Ranieri's side have been in good form of late and will be confident of holding off Juventus

How they would love a fraction of the success enjoyed by their opponents this weekend.

Incredibly, despite winning an eighth consecutive title at a canter, some critics feel Juventus have underachieved this season.

Yes, the quarter-final exit in the Champions League was a massive disappointment to all connected with the Turin club, but the summer signing of 2018 has proved a major success and, if Max Allegri’s team have underperformed, it is certainly not down to Cristiano Ronaldo.

Winning an eighth-consecutive Scudetto and a Supercoppa Italiana cannot be overlooked, despite the shortcomings in Europe, with the Portuguese superstar contributing 28 goals and 10 assists in all competition, Juventus’ top goalscorer.

He has again been the best player, driving the team forward, and the likes of Giorgio Chiellini, Federico Bernardeschi and Blaise Matuidi have been among his team-mates stressing how impressed they were when they saw his ambition and dedication in training.

Will that same desire be on show this weekend I wonder.

As Juve look to finish with a flourish, Roma are just desperate to finish with something.

History

Roma have only one victory over Juventus in their last six league meetings.

Yet their record at the Stadio Olimpico against the ‘old lady’ is good.

Last season’s goalless draw was preceded by a 3-1 success when Nainggolan, Stephan El Shaarawy and Daniele De Rossi were all on target.

In fact, you have to go back five years to the last time Juventus won in Rome.

Their clash earlier this season, just before Christmas, saw a 1-0 home Juve win courtesy of a first half Mario Mandzukic goal.

After that result, Roma were in 10th position which shows how Ranieri has improved the club’s fortunes.

Betting Tip

??

AS Roma vs Juventus 1X2 draw @ 3.25
May 13, 02:30(GMT+8)

The Serie A betting odds actually edge towards Roma. Perhaps that is because they have something to play for while Juve can afford to relax.

The 1X2 odds back the hosts @ 2.49, with Juve priced @ 2.78 and the draw @ 3.25.

You can get Asian Handicap odds on Roma -0.25 @ 2.20 compared to Juventus 0.00 @ 2.07 – that’s not a bet which you will see very often!

I can see this being so tight again, as in previous meetings and a total goal 0-1 @ 3.70 is tempting.

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18-May 2019 Saturday 3:06 PM (123 days ago)            #16
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Coppa Italia: A Cup Final to Savour

Atalanta vs Lazio

It’s cup final time in Italy.

The Coppa Italia showpiece will be won and lost at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome and none of the established heavyweights will be there.

It is certainly one to savour with two finalists that few SBOBET fans expected to be contesting the occasion going head to head and craving silverware.

Talking Points

Atalanta have been a delight this term, providing both Coppa Italia highlights and Serie A surprises.

And now they are potentially 90 minutes away from claiming their first major piece of silverware since winning the trophy in 1963.

On that occasion, they were 3-1 winners over Torino. Although they have twice reached the final since then (1987 and 1996) it remains the club’s only major trophy.

Now their resurgence under Gian Piero Gasperini has the small club from Lombardy dreaming of glory.

They have already surpassed expectations by going into the final two league matches of the campaign in fourth spot.

If they stay there, they will qualify for the Champions League for the first ever time.

To see off chasers AC Milan and Roma would defy even their staunchest supporters.

To win the Italian Cup, after seeing off Cagliari, reigning champions Juventus, and Fiorentina in a thrilling semi-final en route, would defy the Coppa Italia betting odds.

With a modest squad and an even more modest budget, arguably no team is more deserving in Serie A of Champions League football than Atalanta this season.

 


 

 

The club lead the division’s goal scoring charts with 73 goals so far and this attractive, attacking football has turned the heads of many football fans across Europe.

Atalanta head to the final without fear and with more than credible hopes.

It would be easy to call it a dream, but that really doesn’t do it justice. This has been mapped out, thought out and delivered with impressive attention to detail and no little stylish football. It deserves to bring a trophy, although their Roman rivals for silverware will have something to say about that.

Lazio certainly have the advantage in that the final will be played at their home stadium.

They last won the trophy in 2013 and coach Simone Inzaghi has already guided them to silverware in the form of the 2017 Supercoppa.

Yet they have slipped up of late, are out of the equation for Champions League qualification and have been so inconsistent they are likely to miss out on European football altogether next season unless they win the tournament.

Their cup form will provide Inazghi with reasons for optimism.

After seeing off Serie C outfit Novara in the first round, Lazio have progressed to the final with impressive quarter and semi-final victories over both Milan giants who are above them in the table.

If omens are your thing, both sides could actually struggle as Luca Banti has been confirmed as the referee.

Banti is seen as a safe pair of hands, given he also officiated the Supercoppa in January, which was contested by Milan and Juventus.

Simone Inzaghi's side are aiming to produce Coppa Italia highlights as they visit Stadiio Olimpico
Simone Inzaghi could take advantage of playing in their home stadium as they clash against Atalanta

Lazio have won just eight of their 27 games when the 45-year-old has been manning the helm.Atalanta, meanwhile, fare even worse, picking up only four victories from a possible 16.

But don’t worry about stats like that – sit back and enjoy what should be an intriguing contest between one of the bridesmaids of Italian football and an underdog which is punching well and truly above its weight.

It should be a refreshing and uplifting occasion.

History

When these sides met just over a week ago at this venue, Atalanta pulled off an impressive 3-1 victory.

After Marco Parolo had given Lazio a third minute lead, the visitors hit back with goals from Duvan Zapata, Timothy Castagne and an own goal.

They also beat them 1-0 at home earlier in the season when Zapata scored a first minute goal which proved to be the only one of the contest.

Last season both encounters ended level.

A 1-1 draw at Lazio saw Musa Barrow and Felipe Caicedo trade goals, while the sides shared six goals in a 3-3 thriller earlier in the campaign.

Betting Tip

??

Atalanta vs Lazio Total Goal 2-3 @ 1.85
May 16, 02:45 (GMT+8)

Lazio start as slight favourites – but it is slight.

They are priced 1X2 @ 2.62 with Atalanta @ 2.65 and the draw @ 3.10.

With Asian Handicap betting odds, again there is little to separate the two sides.

Lazio 0.00 @ 1.95, Atalanta 0.00 @ 1.97, Lazio -0.25 @ 2.29 and Atalanta -0.25 @ 2.33 is testament to that.

A repeat of Atalanta’s recent success – correct score 1-3 – will provide you with a payout @ 21.00.

Lazio should win but virtually all the neutrals will want Atalanta.

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18-May 2019 Saturday 3:07 PM (123 days ago)            #17
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Serie A: Inter ‘s Ticket to the Champions League

Napoli vs Inter Milan

The Stadio San Paolo in Naples is the place to be this weekend for the Serie A game of the weekend, as second meets third, Napoli against Inter Milan.

Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli has already qualified for the Champions League, but pride won’t allow them to let the 13 point gap to Scudetto winners Juve stretch any further. Meanwhile Inter can confirm its own Champions League ticket with a win in Naples. And after spending most of the league season in the top four, it would be a disaster for Luciano Spalletti’s side to fall at the final hurdle.

Inter has another chance to win next week, but won’t want to leave their fans fretting until the last day when nerves will be completely shredded. So they need this win.

The best action for SBOBET Serie A fans will be centred around the top four and the bottom three from hereon, and Napoli vs Inter is right up there as Sunday’s big match.

Talking Points

Napoli’s creative duo to return?

Polish striker Arek Milik has had a superb season under Ancelotti, top scoring for Gli Azzurri with 17 goals. But the hosts have no shortage of attacking threat, with midfielders Jose Callejon and Piotr Zielinski both enjoying good seasons.

But the main men weren’t involved in last week’s 1-2 win against SPAL and they could be set to return, to give Inter’s defence even more to think about. Lorenzo Insigne has scored ten goals and made six in another productive campaign which has seen him linked with Champions League finalists Liverpool.

Napoli have been in excellent form with four victories out of five in Serie A
Dries Mertens celebrates scoring their first goal against Frosinone

And Belgian wide man Dries Mertens has been even more prolific, scoring 14 and making nine assists so far. If either or both are in the starting line-up, the hosts will have an important edge.

Inter needs one more win

With just four points separating Inter, in third place, from Roma in sixth, Spalletti’s team still has work to do to hold on to its top four position.

Fifth placed AC Milan has a home game against Frosinone and then a final day fixture away to SPAL; two very winnable matches. Meanwhile Roma is away to Sassuolo and then at home to Parma and could easily pick up two victories as well.

With fourth placed Atalanta on a superb run of four consecutive victories I’d say Inter needs a win to be sure. Next week Spalletti’s team entertains Empoli, currently in the bottom three but fighting for its Serie A life, winning the last two games; so that is in no way a foregone conclusion.

There is no doubting the visitors’ defensive capabilities, but their flair players need to stand up in Naples. Radja Nainggolan scored a spectacular opener in the recent draw with Juventus and he can be guaranteed to battle to the end.

Mauro Icardi dominated the Serie A 2019 news at the turn of the year, but not in a way Inter fans wanted, as his protracted contract negotiations saw him sidelined. But he’s back in the fold and top scoring with ten goals, while World Cup finalist Ivan Perisic has eight.

Inter’s only injury is Dutch defender Stefan De Vrij.

 


 

 

History

Inter hasn’t been able to pull away from the chasing pack, largely due to picking up just two wins from the last six games. The other four were all drawn, three against Atalanta, Juventus and Roma; so this has been one tough run in for Spalletti’s team.

The pressure on Inter eased a little with a 2-0 victory over Chievo on Monday which has extended their unbeaten run to seven.

Only Juventus has conceded fewer goals than Inter’s 28.

While the head to heads are marginally in the visitors’ favour, Inter has won 16 to Napoli’s 14, with nine drawn since 1993; they have never had a league win at this stadium and Napoli’s home record reads 12 wins, four draws and two defeats.

So what do the Napoli vs Inter Milan betting odds tell us?

Betting Tip

??

Napoli vs Inter Milan Under 2.75 @ 1.97
May 20, 02:30 (GMT+8)

The odds suggest we’re in for a hard fought game with Napoli at 2.48, Inter at 2.91 and the draw at 3.10.

There will be plenty of attacking players on show at the Stadio San Paolo, but Inter’s defence will be well marshalled as always, while their front line hasn’t been prolific. Napoli doesn’t need a result, but will play with intent.

The last three meetings produced just a single goal, and while it’s unusual for both teams to score in this fixture, 1-1 is the most likely result at 6.20, and, like it or not, that will extend Inter’s season for another week.

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27-May 2019 Monday 6:11 PM (114 days ago)            #18
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Serie A: Time to Say Farewell to a Champion

Juventus vs Atalanta

It was always going to be a party atmosphere in Turin but today’s announcement, which caught many unawares, have made this an even more important occasion for the ‘old lady’ of Italian football.

For this won’t just be a day of celebration for an eighth successive Serie A title, this won’t just be a day the players of Juventus get their hands on the Scudetto, this will be a day they say farewell to someone who has become a favourite son.

Talking Points

It’s understood when players were told the news that Massimiliano Allegri will step down at the end of the season (a title winner in each of his five seasons at the club), Cristiano Ronaldo immediately said ‘we’ll play for him on Sunday’.

That means there will be an extra incentive in this final home match in charge.

And that, SBOBET fans, spells bad news for followers of Atalanta, themselves desperate for the points in their quest to reach the Champions League for the first time.

Perhaps the runaway champions won’t subconsciously take it easy against opponents who are themselves reeling from a late defeat in the final of the Coppa Italia this week.

More still, they will be seeking revenge for being knocked out of the Italian Cup quarter-finals by Atalanta.

 


 

 

That 3-0 reverse in January and a surprise defeat to Ajax, also in the quarter-finals of the Champions League, are the only blips for Allegri during another successful campaign.

Looking back, it’s hard to think the Livorno native was not initially welcomed in Turin as Antonio Conte’s successor.

Yet he won them over by reaching the Champions League Final in his first season, not to mention the Scudetto again and the Coppa Italia.

Indeed, he went on to win 11 trophies on the Juve bench, including five consecutive Serie A titles, four editions of the Coppa Italia and two Italian Super Cups, creating many Serie A highlights along the way.

Allegri leaves with, so far, 269 competitive games under his belt, winning 191, drawing 40 and losing 38.

One of his mainstays during his tenure, Giorgio Chiellini will miss the match with a calf injury.

With speculation already begun on who will replace Allegri in the hotseat, his successor may also have another potent frontman at his disposal if reports are to be believed with personal terms agreed with Inter Milan striker Mauro Icardi.

According to Gazzetta dello Sport, Icardi’s ‘first and only choice’ in the event he leaves Inter this summer is Juve and the newspaper claims a five-year deal is proposed, worth €8m a season plus bonuses.

However, whereas the Old Lady would be trying to offer Douglas Costa in exchange, the Nerazzurri are demanding only cash.

True or not, Atalanta will have enough to worry about on Sunday without Chiellini or Icardi.

Atalanta have a once-improbable Champions League place to play for when they visit Juventus in Serie A
Atalanta’s away record is the best in Serie A with the exception of Juventus

Boss Gian Piero Gasperini and his charges are having a terrific season but how they react to Wednesday’s body blow could well determine whether it’s Champions League or Europa League football next season.

A point here and the former is distinctly possible. To gain that they will need to stop a talented team which may show more hunger and emotion than normal.

History

As well as Atalanta’s cup success earlier this year, they also managed to hold the Turin giants in the league in December.

Then a Duvan Zapata double put them on course for a famous victory before Ronaldo rescued a Boxing Day point.

The clashes last season were also close.

Again, there was a 2-2 draw at Atalanta when they fought back from two goals down, courtesy of goals from Mattia Caldara and Bryan Cristante – this after Federico Bernardeschi and Gonzalo Higuain put Juve in the ascendancy.

The return match saw Allegri’s men record a 2-0 home success, courtesy of Higuain and Blaise Matuidi.

Overall in all competitions, Juventus have triumphed in 70 of their meetings, with 42 draws and 15 Atalanta successes.

Betting Tip

??

Juventus vs Atalanta Juventus 1X2 @ 2.37
May 20, 02:30(GMT+8)

With Serie A betting odds, if Asian Handicap betting is for you then take a look at Juventus -0.25 @ 2.06 or Atalanta + 0.00 @ 2.29.

Goals are expected with over 2.75 goals priced @ 1.99, total goal 2-3 @ 1.97 and total goal 4-6 @ 3.10 all on the table.

A repeat of the league meeting earlier this season – correct score 2-2 – will payout @ 12.00, while a rerun of the corresponding fixture last season – correct score 2-0 – is offered, perhaps surprisingly, at a slightly higher @ 13.00.

My gut instinct tells me Atalanta will be still reeling from their midweek cup final defeat and, while Juve may be reeling from Allegri’s announcement, they will also be determined to give him a fitting send-off in front of their own supporters.

A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR (??) BETS ARE WORTH:
?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)
Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

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27-May 2019 Monday 6:55 PM (114 days ago)            #19
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Serie A: Napoli Prolongs Inter Agony

Napoli 4-1 Inter Milan

Carlo Ancelotti’s Napoli put on a stunning second-half show, to land Inter Milan’s Serie A top-four hopes in serious doubt at the Stadio San Paulo tonight.

Gli Azzurri has second place wrapped up and a summer break to look forward to, but for Inter there will be a nerve-wracking end to the season next weekend.

This was a game Inter really needed to take something from to keep their Champions League target nicely within sight, particularly in light of the Serie A 2019 results this weekend. Atalanta moved ahead of Luciano Spalletti’s side with a draw away to Juventus, while fifth-placed Milan climbed to within a point of Inter with a home win over Frosinone.

Spalletti’s men have been in the top four for most of the season, and it’s still in their own hands, but their grasp on the prize may just be slipping.

We’re going to have a fantastic climax to the SBOBET Serie A season so keep it right here for the best odds, the pre-match previews and all the action as the drama unfolds.

 

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Highlights of the game

Both sides started with attacking intent, Dries Mertens firing over on three minutes and then Inter’s Radja Nainggolan having a shot charged down after good work from Lautaro Martinez. The Belgian midfielder is a man for the big game, scoring a spectacular goal in the recent 1-1 draw with Juventus, and he looked up for this match from the off.

Napoli top scorer Arkadiusz Milik had an early chance too, picking up a ball from Jose Callejon before watching his shot fly agonisingly close to the top left corner. But on 16 minutes Gli Azzurri went ahead when Fabian Ruiz passed to Piotr Zielinski and the midfielder found his range superbly as his long-range shot flew into the top left corner.

The hosts continued to look the stronger team and Inter keeper Samir Handanovic got down smartly to deny Mertens, but as half time approached Inter moved up a gear, driven by the wing play of Ivan Perisic who set up chances for Martinez and Nainggolan, but neither troubled Orestis Karnezis in the Napoli goal.

Inters’ night was pretty much over on the hour when Mertens bagged his 15th goal of the season, meeting a Callejon cross and planting his header beyond Handanovic and into the bottom corner of the net.

The hosts now had the taste for blood and went for the jugular on 71 minutes. Milik almost made it three, but was denied from close range and then as Napoli piled on the pressure Kevin Malcuit found Ruiz in space and he fired into the bottom corner.

Then the Spaniard made it four when he picked up a ball from Mertens and fired it high into the top corner as the Inter defence, so good all season, began to look in disarray.

Mauro Icardi won himself a penalty and duly converted it, but it was little consolation for Inter on a worrying night for their fans.

Serie A: Inter Milan suffer a 4-1 defeat to Napoli
Mauro Icardi taking the penalty during their match against Napoli at Stadio San Paolo

Key Statistics

The Napoli vs Inter Milan betting odds pointed to a home win at 2.48, but Inter needed the result more than their hosts and had plenty of the ball (55 per cent) in the first half, but only had one shot on target to Napoli’s two.

The visitors dominated possession in the second half too, but just didn’t have Napoli’s cutting edge and paid the price.

Inter has never had a league win at this stadium and Napoli’s home record for the season now reads 13 wins, four draws and two defeats.

What’s next?

Napoli’s season comes to a close next week with an away trip to Bologna, a team which has hit form with a run of four wins from six to pull away from the drop zone after a difficult season.

Carlo Ancelotti is now looking forward to next season and has already expressed an interest in Spurs wing-back Kieran Trippier as he looks to strengthen his squad.

But it’s all about the here and now for Inter.  City rivals AC Milan have a final day fixture away to SPAL. Gennaro Gattuso’s side is just a point behind Inter and has won three on the bounce. Meanwhile, Atalanta is at home to Sassuolo.

Inter has a home game against Empoli. Three wins on the run have given the visitors a real chance of survival and they will continue to fight for their Serie A survival, having hammered Europa League hopefuls Torino 4-1 today.

That is not a game Inter fans will be looking forward to.

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27-May 2019 Monday 6:57 PM (114 days ago)            #20
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Serie A: That Was the Year That Was!

It was the season in which we said Ciao to Cristiano and Arrivederci to Allegri.

The year in which little Atalanta defied the Serie A betting odds, Juventus produced Serie A highlights galore and Roma seemed spineless and soulless.

SBOBET fans of Serie A will certainly have lots to reflect on when they assess 2018/19 in the Italian top flight.

Ultimately, as expected, Juventus proved far too strong for the rest.

The marquee capture of Cristiano Ronaldo set the tone for a dominant ‘old lady’ of Turin as they captured an eight successive Scudetto and, despite bowing out in the Champions League quarter-finals, CR7 showed they remain a formidable force on both the domestic and European stage, despite critics.

There is also untapped potential in the current squad for Max Allegri’s successor.

Talented stars like Paulo Dybala, Joao Cancelo and Miralem Pjanic could blossom under a new coach, while the likes of Moise Kean and Rodrigo Bentancur could develop into top players. Federico Bernardeschi, meanwhile, has shown vast improvement in the last year, Ronaldo is a guarantee for any coach and Juve are sure to make moves in the transfer market.

Then there’s Napoli.

It was a season in which Italian football welcomed back a favourite son and he guided them to another well-deserved second spot (for the third time in four years) ahead of the giants of Milan with something to spare.

Carlo Ancelotti’s know-how of approaching games will go a long way in maturing this team into Scudetto challengers. Now chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis has to give him what he needs to take the club to the next level.

The side of the season were Atalanta. The team from Bergamo were undoubtedly the talk of the town and victory against Sassuolo in their final match clinched a place at Europe’s top table for the first time in their history.

To bounce back from a heartbreaking defeat in the Coppa Italia Final, showed Gian Piero Gasperini has genuine claims to be the manager of the season.

His youth-centric philosophy and offensive approach will have led to envious eyes being cast from bigger clubs, yet it would be sad if he and Atalanta don’t now embark on the next stage of their exciting adventure together.



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Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

Despite the upheaval, Inter Milan’s ability to keep ahead of their big spending city rivals Milan may still not be enough to keep Luciano Spalletti in a job – Antonio Conte is tipped to replace him this summer.

Yet it probably also means both men in the Milan hot seats will lose their jobs this summer.

Gennaro Gattuso finds himself under pressure as the club’s business model relies heavily on Champions League qualification. The former Italy midfielder built up credit but is now duly losing it and it’s unlikely he will remain at the helm next term.

Roma’s lowest position for six years was not helped by a second successive summer of key departures and boss Eusebio Di Francesco paid the price. In fairness, few could question the dedication of most players when Claudio Ranieri came in for the final few months of the campaign but who comes in next will shape the Giallorossi’s short to medium term future.

Lazio ensured a successful season, despite missing out on a top-six finish, by lifting the Italian Cup. Whether it proves coach Simone Inzaghi’s last stand remains to be seen but certainly he will be on Juventus’ radar.

That Fiorentina were not mathematically safe going into the final match (following a run of 15 matches without a victory in all competitions) was a shock and could have led to catastrophe for Viola who have had a traumatic 18 months.

They need to start again over the summer and become a European contender once more.

Empoli have ended their Serie A journey with a 2-1 loss to Inter Milan
Empoli Players looking dejected after the 2-1 defeat to Inter Milan

That Empoli almost managed to pull clear highlights two factors.

That they were wrong to show a lack of faith in coach Aurelio Andreazzoli by firing him.

But also that they were willing to hold their hands up and learn from their mistake by then bringing back the tactician who took them to promotion last year.

Andreazzoli guided his side to three consecutive victories against the likes of Sampdoria and Torino, as well as wins over sides like Napoli, victories which ultimately gave last season’s Serie B champions a chance of remaining in the top flight.

Frosinone and Chievo were well adrift, the latter with just two league wins all season.

Their rebuild began this week as they parted ways with director of sport Giancarlo Romairone.

As we started, it’s time for more hellos and goodbyes with Empoli – by the narrowest of margins - also dropping out to be replaced next season by Brescia, Leece and Benevento - back in Serie A for only the second time in their history.

That was 2018/19.

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17-Jul 2019 Wednesday 12:54 PM (63 days ago)            #21
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Serie A: Assessing Cristiano Ronaldo’s Debut Season with Juventus

It's been just over a year since Cristiano Ronaldo rocked the football world with his decision to move from Real Madrid to Juventus. After nearly a decade with the Spanish giants, Ronaldo was set to take on a new challenge in his career.

The move certainly had risks for both sides. For Ronaldo, he would have to adjust to an all-new team, league, and country at the age of 33, which is quite an undertaking.

And for Juve, they were paying a massive amount of money for a player who was well into his 30s and would likely never reach the amazing heights of his prime.

But they brought him in, anyway. And now that a few months have passed, it's a good time for SBOBET to take a more in-depth look back at Ronaldo's first season in Italy and Juventus.

Ronny's decline continues

Cristiano Ronaldo was already on somewhat of a decline in his last few seasons with Real Madrid. Although his tally of over 40 goals in his last two years was impressive for mere mortals, it was not quite good enough for him, especially after he previously topped 50 goals in six consecutive seasons.

With his advancing age, he had begun the trend of conserving his energy earlier in the season so he could go full bore during the business end, particularly in Europe. And as his amazing Champions League-winning performances for Real proved, that strategy worked.

Nevertheless, the downward trajectory of his numbers continued in his first season with Juve. He finished with a modest 21 goals in Serie A -- fourth in the league behind 36-year-old Fabio Quagliarella (26), Duvan Zapata (23), and Krzysztof Piatek (22)-- and more importantly, just 28 goals overall. That was his lowest goal total since his last year at Manchester United a decade ago.

The advanced metrics also lent evidence to the fact that Ronaldo was no longer among the top contenders for the title of best player in the world.

While he remained a prolific shot provider, the quality of his shots declined. Per StatsBomb, his expected goals (xG) per 90 minutes notably fell from 0.78 in his last season in Madrid to just 0.57 in his first season with Juve. He also turned the ball over an additional one time per 90 minutes, as did his average touches inside the opposing penalty box (21.58 to 15.04).

Of course, Ronaldo was still capable of producing the sublime. His magical second-leg hat-trick against Atletico in the Champions League instantly springs to mind. But those types of performances are quickly becoming fewer and farther between as time continues to catch up to him.



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Change out of Cristiano's control

To be fair to Ronaldo, though, he wasn't exactly put in the absolute best position to succeed at Juventus.

In his final few seasons at Madrid, he was allowed to transition into more or less an out-and-out centre-forward, which was in part how he was able to maximize his goalscoring potential.

But at Juventus, there were times during the season where he had to return to his original position out wide out of necessity to accommodate Mario Mandzukic in the line-up.

It likely wasn't all that fun for 34-year-old Ronaldo to return to the wing at this stage in his career. Not only was it more taxing physically, but it also took him further away from goal, which played a factor in his dip in scoring.

To his credit, though, he did not cause any sort of controversy or publicly voice his displeasure about his role; he simply went out and did what manager Massimiliano Allegri asked of him and made a handful of Serie A 2019 highlights along the way.

Another Serie A, but no Champions League

Cristiano Ronaldo will try to bounce back and break records for his second year in Serie A
Cristiano Ronaldo looking disappointed after losing in the Champions League quarter-finals against Ajax

In terms of silverware, Ronaldo was obviously a significant contributor to Juventus' Serie A championship. But it's also quite likely that they would have won another title even without him.

As the pre-season Serie A 2019 odds showed, Juve are just head and shoulders above their main rivals. And so it proved as they strolled to their eighth consecutive championship by 11 points.

However, winning the Champions League was the main reason Juventus bought Ronaldo. After he helped Real beat them in the past, it was his presence that was supposed to take the Italians over the top. Unfortunately, though, he couldn't follow through on that promise.

Of course, it would be unfair to blame Juventus' continued Champions League failure on Ronaldo. He did almost single-handedly rescue them against Atletico in the quarter-final. But these are the remarkably high standards that have been set for a player of Ronaldo's immense greatness.

For any other player, especially a 34-year-old, what Ronaldo did this year with Juve -- leading his team in goals en route to a league title -- would qualify as a very successful debut season. But the fact that they did not accomplish their ultimate goal in Europe means that his first season with the Bianconeri still fell well short of expectations.

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29-Jul 2019 Monday 2:16 PM (51 days ago)            #22
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The Serie A Window to Watch

There’s still weeks of the transfer window remaining but two names are dominating the Serie A landscape right now.

They are both frontmen, both in demand and, according to this SBOBET observer, both underrated.

Following Cristiano Ronaldo last summer, reigning champions Juventus have again secured arguably the signing of the summer so far but there could be another big move or two to follow.

The names so many are talking about are Romelu Lukaku and Paulo Dybala.

 


 

 

There’s no question Lukaku will score goals at any level. Indeed, it’s a surprise to me that Manchester United are reportedly willing to part with the Belgian who has a fine scoring record during his two seasons at Old Trafford.

It’s no secret that coach Antonio Conte wants him. After all, he was beaten to his signature two years ago by then United boss Jose Mourinho when Conte was at Chelsea.

The fact remains, though, that Inter have offered a valuation well below his worth in the current market.

Indeed, why would United sell for anything less than the £75 million they required to secure his services 24 months ago, especially for a player whose record is nearly that of a goal a game in which he starts.

That is where Juventus come into the equation.

If reports are to be believed, the Italian champions are now considering the Belgian number nine as well.

In fact, his latest tweet suggests things are moving.

Serie A highlights would be livened up even more with the arrival of another prolific frontman, receiving service from the likes of Ronaldo and co.

The rivalry between these two clubs looks set to last well beyond a transfer deal, judging by the way they went head to head in the International Champions Cup earlier this week.

Interestingly if a deal can be reached – if it is even being considered – both clubs could well benefit.

The too often flattering-to-deceive Paul Pogba struck up a fine rapport with Dybala during his days in Italy.

Juventus star Paulo Dybala already made his mark after winning the Serie A title four times
Paulo Dybala celebrates scoring their first goal against BSC Young Boys

When Dybala left Palermo for Juventus ahead of the 2015-16 Serie A season, Pogba played a crucial role in bringing the best out of the dazzling Argentinian. The talented youngsters became a lethal duo in the Juve attack – collecting a combined 21 assists.

Pogba’s playmaking skills also helped Dybala flourish up front, with the latter scoring 19 goals and finishing second in the goalscoring charts.

Anyway, I digress.

There are plenty of other bits of transfer business to consider before you consult the Serie A betting odds.

Juventus have already snapped up Adrien Rabiot and Aaron Ramsey on free transfers and Cristian Romero has cost them £23 million, although he has been loaned straight back to Genoa for the 2019-20 campaign.

With Nicolas Pepe seemingly going to Arsenal, last season’s runners-up Napoli are turning their focus back to PSV Eindhoven winger Hirving Lozano.

It’s claimed much of it was down to commission, totalling €10m, that the Partenopei would have had to pay Pepe’s representatives.

And with Real Madrid still refusing to release James Rodriguez on loan with option to buy, Napoli are going back to a target first mentioned in January.

Lozano plays a similar position to Pepe and turns 24 next week, contributing 21 goals and 12 assists in 40 competitive games for PSV last season.

He would be another welcome addition to Serie A.

It may not appear so on the face of it but Milan may well have secured two astute recruits themselves.

Rade Krunic and Ismael Bennacer from relegated Empoli are not the most glamorous signings yet could be of real benefit.

Milan, of course, have been excluded from European football next season as a result of their Financial Fair Play settlement, with Torino set to take their place.

Among the other notable incomings so far are Pedro Obiang who has left the cut and thrust of the English Premier League with West Ham for Sassuolo.

Eljif Elmas persuaded Napoli to pay more than £14 million to Fenerbahce, Amadou Diawara swapped Naples for Rome with defender Kostas Manolas going the other way for £32 million and Ruslan Malinovskyi has left Genk in Belgium for last season’s surprise package Atalanta.

It’s not just incomings where the focus is, however.

Ivan Perisic, despite being involved in pre-season, is clearly not part of Conte’s plans at Inter and would be a signing of genuine quality should he depart the San Siro.

Meanwhile, midfielder Daniele De Rossi, who has left Roma after 18 years at the club and joins Argentinian side Boca Juniors on a free transfer.

With the Serie A market open until August 23, the simple advice is: Watch this space!

 

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14-Aug 2019 Wednesday 2:04 PM (35 days ago)            #23
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Ten to Shine in Serie A

We’ve just over 10 days to go until the new Serie A season begins.

Reigning champions Juventus or Parma will have the honour of kicking the first ball on August 24.

But who are the 10 players my eye is on ahead of the 2019-20 campaign?

Cristiano Ronaldo (Juventus)

How can you not include one of the best players in the world? Ronaldo inspired Juventus to yet another title last season, and even at the age of 34, his sheer brilliance is undisputed.

He also generated a new generation of Juve fans. While the Champions League may be their priority, they will be equally determined to hold off their rivals and seal a ninth successive Scudetto.

He will remain the star attraction in 2019-20.

Romelu Lukaku (Inter Milan)

Inter Milan signed Romelu Lukaku to bolster their squad heading to the new Serie A season
Romelu Lukaku gives his thumbs up as he salutes Inter Milan supporters

His move was the focus of much speculation, and Inter Milan finally paid his worth.

Now that he has arrived, Belgium’s record goalscorer wants to justify the faith shown in him by new boss Antonio Conte.

Wherever he has gone in England, Lukaku has scored goals which, according to this SBOBET writer, makes it surprising why Manchester United were willing to sell him.

He had some special moments in a United shirt and notched a record slightly better than a goal every other game he started for the Red Devils.

In theory, despite the defensive excellence Italians are renowned for, Lukaku may find scoring goals in Serie A more straightforward than in the Premier League.

The slower approach play may suit him and certainly, his physical presence will unnerve some opponents.

Krzysztof Piatek (AC Milan)

Here is a guy making quite an impression and someone I expect to be engaged in a battle for the top scorer prize.

Piatek scored 19 goals in just 21 games for Genoa, which prompted Milan to snap up the 23-year-old Polish striker.

He has now been handed the Rossoneri’s famed No.9 shirt and will be under a weight of expectations.

Since 2012, eight players have worn the number on their back, notably Alexandre Pato, Mattia Destro, Fernando Torres and Gonzalo Higuain.

They racked up 143 games between the eight of them but scored just 25 goals, a ratio of 0.17 goals per game.

I suspect Piatek will relish that shirt. After all, he has already created some Serie A 2019 highlights with 11 goals since he signed in January.

In a season in which Milan do not have the added distraction of European football, his intentions will be solely focused on domestic matters, and that could be to their benefit.

Adrien Rabiot (Juventus)

Now here is a player whose signature is a statement by the Champions. A free transfer, too.

That the Turin giants won the protracted race for his services after he was linked with a host of Europe’s biggest clubs is quite a coup.

He has impressed in pre-season and, while he could find the general standard slightly higher than Ligue 1, there’s no reason why he won’t make an equally good impression.

Aged just 24 so approaching his prime, he enjoyed an impressive 92% pass completion rate in his final full season as regular at Paris Saint-Germain.

Matthijs de Ligt (Juventus)

If Ronaldo was the star name last summer, Juventus have pulled off the coup of this summer too.

The 19-year-old captain of Ajax was the most sought-after defender in the game, and he has chosen to continue his development with the "Old Lady" of Turin.

He could form a potentially formidable partnership with Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci.

It will be fascinating to see how he and Juve fare under Maurizio Sarri.

Fabio Quagliarella (Sampdoria)

That Quagliarella was the Serie A top scorer last season for a side which finished ninth in the table was a terrific achievement and proof that the veteran marksman just gets better with age.

While he can’t be expected to repeat that feat, he will still be a man to watch.

The striker, Italy’s all-time oldest goalscorer, last season equalled Gabriel Batistuta’s record of scoring in 11 consecutive Serie A matches.



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Lautaro Martínez – Inter

In Lukaku, Inter have their marquee signing.

In Mauro Icardi, if he stays, Inter have a captain who is one of the most accomplished marksmen in world soccer.

In Martínez, they have one of the most promising.

Serving as an apprentice to his Argentine compatriot, the 21-year-old has caught the eye for the Nerazzurri since arriving from Buenos Aires side Racing Club and will only get better with consistent chances to shine.

Federico Chiesa – Fiorentina

Considering his team only stayed up on the final day of last season, Fiorentina fans must be relieved the son of former Italy international striker Enrico Chiesa is still at the club.

He has emerged as the club’s hottest property over the last 18 months, an exciting yet tenacious player who makes things happen.

While his dad earned 22 caps for the Azzurri, Chiesa Jr. is tipped to comfortably surpass that total.

My final two to watch are based on transfers that could well happen over the next few days.

Angel Correa (Milan?)

This would be a smart move for Milan but it’s not that simple.

After Atletico Madrid reportedly agreed a €60million deal for Valencia forward Rodrigo Moreno, the door is open for Correa to move to Serie A.

Atletico are reportedly around €10m apart in their valuation from what Milan are willing to pay.

One thing’s for sure, the Italian league would be a destination that should suit the 24-year-old.

Hirving Lozano (Napoli?)

If this comes off, it could be the signing of the season.

In fact, he is just what last season’s runners-up need.

Lozano has helped PSV Eindhoven to a league title and a second spot in his two years in the Eredivisie.

Under the tutelage of Carlo Ancelotti, the versatile attacker, who can play up front or as a winger, would positively thrive.

He has scored 40 times in 78 appearances in all competitions over his two seasons for the Red and Whites.

So it all starts a week on Saturday. Look at the Serie A 2019 betting odds before deciding who to put your money on.  

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22-Aug 2019 Thursday 1:49 PM (27 days ago)            #24
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Serie A: Juventus Stronger than Ever

It’s been a busy old summer in Italy, as the top clubs wheeled and dealt their way through to the upcoming season. And if any team is to wrestle the Serie A title from the Bianconeri then they know they had to strengthen.

They had to strengthen, not just to climb closer to the serial Scudetto winners but, in some cases to avoid drifting ever further behind. The Old Lady hasn’t stood still, as new head coach Maurizio Sarri has announced his return to Serie A with a statement of intent. He had a torrid time at Chelsea but still led the Blues to a top-four Premier League finish and a Europa League title last season.

So he left Stamford Bridge in a better state than he found it and will be determined to show that he remains a master in the dugout.

Transfer Hits and Misses

Sarri has had a productive first few weeks in Turin and has brought in a player he knew well from his time in England. Danilo has arrived in a deal worth around 37m Euros and he is the type of player who will fit into the champions set up with ease. A good defender, he also has a cultured right foot and a great shot on him.

But Matthijs de Ligt could be the signing of the summer after his 75m Euro move from Ajax. The 19-year-old was the most sought after defender in the game, with plenty of suitors after he forged a world-class international partnership with Liverpool’s Virgil Van Dijk, and inspired a young Ajax team to a scintillating Champions League run.

But the most emotional move of the summer goes to a Bianconeri legend. Gigi Buffon has returned to Juve from PSG and the 41-year-old announced the ‘life is incredible’ as he put pen to paper to seal his return after a one-year absence. And former PSG midfield man Adrian Rabiot has joined him in his move to Turin.

New Inter Milan boss, Antonio Conte, has been busy too. After a summer of uncertainty for Romelu Lukaku, the former Manchester United striker arrived at Inter in a big-money deal from Old Trafford. Conte has been a long admirer of the bustling Belgian striker who will score goals wherever he goes, and he opened his Inter account with four in a pre-season friendly against Virtus Bergamo.

And at the other end of the pitch, Conte has pulled off a masterstroke, bringing in Uruguayan defender Diego Godin.

Atalanta has a Champions League campaign to look forward to and they have strengthened at both ends of the pitch, buying former Liverpool centre back Martin Skrtel from Fenerbahce, and they have also picked up Sevilla striker Luis Muriel in a 13m deal.

Midfielder Nahitan Nandez has moved from Boca Juniors to Cagliari in a 16m Euro deal and Radja Nainggolan has arrived from Inter Milan on loan after being told by the Nerazzurri that he didn’t feature in Conte’s plans.

But one deal that didn’t go through was a move for Inter’s wantaway striker Mauro Icardi after a swap deal with Edin Dzeko fell through as the Roma man opted to stay put on an extended three-year deal. Roma has lost defender Kostas Manolas in a 32m Euro switch to Napoli while Juve reserve Leonardo Spinazzola has gone to Roma to replace Manolas. The cash strapped club has failed to lure Toby Alderweireld from Spurs to play alongside Spinazsola.

Milan’s biggest move was to sign Rafael Leao from Lille for 27m Euros.

Biggest Winners

 

Inter Milan's record signing Romelu Lukaku could miss club's first game of the Serie A season
Romelu Lukaku gives his thumbs up as he salutes Inter Milan supporters from a window of the Italian Olympic Committee's headquarters

Inter Milan Away from Juventus, I think the Nerazzurri have made the biggest progress with their two marquee signings of Romelu Lukaku and Diego Godin. For too long, Inter have relied on the goals of Mauro Icardi; and now they have a more reliable source in the shape of Romelu Lukaku. The former Chelsea striker still has plenty to prove and has started in superb style. Keep an eye on the Serie A 2019 betting odds here at SBOBET as these two players bed in, Conte’s team is already alongside Napoli as the biggest threat to Juve and that’s a big jump already.

Biggest Losers

AC Milan and Roma

When the early season Serie A 2019 results begin to roll in there will be a lot of pressure on these two giant clubs who both missed out on a top-four place last season. While Juventus has seriously strengthened, Napoli has protected its quality and Inter has made bold moves, both Milan and Roma have pretty much stood still.

Patrick Cutrone has left the club for Wolves, which is a loss, and while Leao could turn out to be a good move for the Rossoneri I don’t think their fans have too much else to get excited about. At least one of these teams will miss out on the top four again, if not both.

 

What's next?

Milan’s Franck Kessie could be on his way to Wolves to join Cutrone after he made the move to the Black Country, but Paulo Dybala is still waiting for a transfer from Juventus.

He may be in Sarri’s plans but I suspect the Argentine could be on the move sooner rather than later.

Surely Mauro Icardi will find a new home before too long, he won’t want to sit around and watch Lukaku bang the goals in!

 

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23-Aug 2019 Friday 6:19 PM (26 days ago)            #25
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Serie A: Reloaded Juventus Commences Title Defence Against Parma

Parma vs Juventus

Italian juggernauts Juventus are looking to defend their title once more and they’ll start by going on the road against Parma in the first match day of Serie A.

Serie A 2019 odds have Juve remain as the heavy favourites to repeat as champions for the eighth time, and boy, they really look invincible.

After winning it all last season, the Maurizio Sarri-mentored squad continues to not let their guard down by reloading their roster during the summer with shiny additions.

Parma, on the other hand, are coming in with low expectations after finishing just 14th last campaign and that isn’t about to change.

 They will host the reigning champions at the Tardini on Saturday where they’ll hope to have a sucker’s chance of making an upset.

SBOBET looks into what’s ahead for the match between the Gialloblu and the Bianconeri.

Talking Points

Who can stop Juventus?

Probably no one, especially since they dominated the league for the better part of the decade. All in all, Juventus have won the Serie A scudetto 35 times and the rich got even richer during the transfer market last summer.

Matthijs de Ligt was signed for a whopping $84M after leading Ajax to the Champions League semis and he is expected to shine and do bigger things for Maurizio Sarri’s side this campaign.

Besides him, the team went out to grab the likes of Danilo, Aaron Ramsey, Luca Pellegrini, and Merih Demiral to supplement their aging backline while Adrien Rabiot will join Gonzalo Higuain in forming a lethal attacking combination.

Juventus boss Maurizio Sarri is keen to make a statement when he makes his Serie A debut
Juventus manager Maurizio Sarri during the post-match press conference in Singapore

Even with the departure of Joao Cancelo and Moise Kean, Juventus still looks stronger than most teams on paper. The squad will also feature new manager Maurizio Sarri as he will try to bring them to championship glory anew after Massimiliano Allegri stepped down towards the end of last year.

And let’s not forget the elephant in the room who is Cristiano Ronaldo. The 34-year-old superstar will look to bounce back to his otherworldly form after only scoring 21 goals in his first season in the league.

While it may look like that he’s on a steady decline due to his advancing age, expect the Portuguese to produce some of the best Serie A 2019 highlights in his second season with Juve.

Can Parma stay competitive in Serie A?

After going in and out from top-flight status in recent years, Parma is more than determined to continue in competing at the highest level while they try to book a spot in the Europa League.

The Gialloblu signed a couple of promising pieces over the offseason and they’ll surely help the team’s cause. Some notable signings include: Hermani, Yann Karamoh, Dejan Kulusevski, and Gaston Brugman.

At 21 years old, Karamoh is poised to breakout this year for Parma. The French winger is ready to make a name for himself after performing well for Bordeaux in Ligue 1 – even if their relationship turned sour towards the end. Nonetheless, expect him to make a considerable case to make the starting XI for team manager Roberto D’Aversa.

Bruno Alves will continue to man the backline for Parma. Already at 37-year-old, Alves brings veteran leadership as he is the heart and soul of the team. His fitness levels are still high and he has shown the capability to keep up with the youngsters.

Roberto D’Aversa will be tasked once again to try and bring Parma to new heights after a good turnout last campaign. He has been the manager for the team since 2016 and he has laid a viable foundation for the club in the foreseeable future.

 


 

 

History

All in all, Parma and Juventus have had 23 total encounters where the former won six and the latter had won eight in those contests. Surprisingly, there have been nine draws between those clubs.

Last season, I Gialloblu put up a good fight against I Bianconeri. After trailing by two goals, Ivorian skipper Gervinho scored a brace to score a 3-3 draw against Juve.

Parma’s last win against the reigning Serie A champions was a 1-0 victory back in April 2015.

Betting Tip

??

Parma vs Juventus Juventus Asian Handicap -1.25 @1.74
August 24, 00:00 (GMT+8)

Barring any unforeseen circumstances, Juventus is primed to take their first win of the season against Parma.

The defending champions are at 1.33 odds for a victory while Parma are posted at 9.50. The odds of a draw between them are at 4.60.

Loaded with firepower at all positions, I see an easy 3-0 win for Juventus in this one. But let’s hope that the home team can make this more competitive than expected.

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26-Aug 2019 Monday 4:58 PM (23 days ago)            #26
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Serie A: Napoli Starts Title Chase Against Woeful Florentina

Fiorentina vs Napoli

Napoli have always settled for second place against the mighty Juventus in the past few years and they plan to change that narrative this time as they kick off the Serie A season going up against Florentina on the road.

Getting a head start will be crucial for Napoli, and they’ll be on their toes all throughout the season as they play cat and mouse against the retooled defending champions.

It can be argued that their drawn matchup last February crushed Napoli’s dreams of bringing home the Serie A scudetto and for sure they wouldn’t want that to happen again at the same venue in the Stadio Artemio Franchi.

Which is why today, SBOBET takes a look on what’s ahead for this intense affair.

 


 

 

Talking Points

Will Napoli finally get over the hump?

Carlo Ancelotti didn’t waste any time in reinforcing his squad via the transfer market after another maiden finish last term. The Partenopei brought in Giovanni Di Lorenzo, Kostas Manolas and Eljif Elmas after seeing the likes of Amadou Diawara, Raul Albiol, and Marko Rog depart from the squad.

Colombian skipper James Rodriguez was rumoured to possibly join Napoli. However, their loan talks with Real Madrid have reached an impasse which was unfortunate for Gil Azzurri.

Instead, the club went on to pursue PSV Eindhoven star Hirving Lozano for a hefty price. He will be the second highest-paid player in the team after centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly and he is poised to thrive under Carlo Ancelotti’s tutelage.

The former Chelsea boss would like for his men to forget what happened in their pre-season games against Barcelona as the latter exposed their defence, and the combo of the returning Kalidou Koulibaly and Kostas Manolas can address those problems.

Eljif Elmas continues to be an intriguing, young prospect for Gil Azzurri. The 20-year-old brings quality and depth to the midfield along with Fabian Ruiz and Lorenzo Insigne.

With their impressive run over the past few years, Napoli have cemented their status as one of the perennial top-tier contenders in the Serie A. However, they’ll need some luck as well if they plan on overtaking Juventus for the title this year.

Florentina’s new regime

For the most part -- Florentina have been floundering in the Serie A -- becoming the league’s cellar dwellers for quite some time. La Viola finished 16th in the table last season, staving off relegation after finishing only with 41 points.

But then, things are suddenly looking up for Florentina when billionaire Rocco Commisso took over the club from the Della Valle brothers. Overall, the club did fairly well during the transfer window.

Can Franck Ribery make an impact in Serie A after transferring to Fiorentina?
Franck Ribery during his unveiling at Stadio Artemio Franchi

La Viola bolstered their right back and midfield by bringing in Milan Badelj, Erick Pulgar, and Pol Lirola. They’ve also added the likes of Kevin-Prince Boateng and long-time Bayern star Franck Ribery for good measure. Ribery’s signing may have made a lot of headlines, but how this will translate on the pitch still remains to be seen.

The key man for Florentina here is Federico Chiesa. The Italian native chipped in 12 goals in 41 matches last season and is the real attacking threat for La Viola. With a much-improved midfield, expect Chiesa to score more this upcoming season.

On the other hand, Florentina fans will be keen on watching Bartlomiej Dragowski’s performance this season. The Polish goalie is fresh from a new deal with the club after showing glimpses of potential last term. Could he finally be the answer for the GK spot?

With new pieces on hand, all eyes will be on Vincenzo Montella on how will he integrate and use his players for the long season ahead. Expect a more entertaining Florentina squad in the Serie A.

History

Matchups between Napoli and Florentina have always been an intense and tight affair and this one won’t be any different.

These two clubs played in 30 total matches with Napoli winning 15 times and Florentina winning six times. There have been nine draws between them.

Napoli managed to post clean sheets in their two games against Florentina last season.

Betting Tip

??

Fiorentina vs Napoli Napoli Asian Handicap -0.50 @1.80
August 25. 02:45 (GMT+8)

In this fixture, the away team is at 1.79 odds of winning while Florentina is at 4.50. The Serie A odds of this game to end in a draw is at 3.45.

With La Viola still trying to get acclimatised with their new coach, they may appear to be vulnerable at least in this game. Napoli skippers Milik and Insigne will give them fits on defence.

 But expect some noteworthy Serie A 2019 highlights in this fixture and I predict a 2-1 victory in favor of Napoli on this one.

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29-Aug 2019 Thursday 5:21 PM (20 days ago)            #27
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Serie A: All Set for Early Showdown

Juventus vs Napoli

It’s been the fixture in Serie A in recent seasons.

The champions of the past eight seasons against the runners-up in three of the past four years.

The giant ‘old lady’ of Turin against the smaller, plucky Partenopei from Naples.

In many ways – and the SBOBET Serie A betting odds back this up – this should be a home banker.

Yet, Carlo Ancelotti is a wily coach and, if anyone can cause a surprise, it is him.

 


 

 

Talking Points

Napoli produced Serie A highlights galore in the opening weekend of the season as they edged a seven goal thriller at Fiorentina with two-goal Lorenzo Insigne scoring the winner for the Neapolitans.

Meanwhile, veteran defender Giorgio Chiellini’s early goal proved enough to seal a 1-0 win over Parma for Juventus.

There was contrasting drama in both games and perhaps a sign of things to come?

Certainly, Juventus are more solid at the back and, even when not at their most fluid, seem better placed for another title tilt.

As they bid for a record-extending ninth straight title, they showed only shades of the high-speed passing game preferred by new coach Maurizio Sarri.

Yet with prized signing Matthijs de Ligt left on the bench, still controlled their lead on a stuffy night at the Ennio Tardini stadium.

Napoli though will have no fear as they arrive in the champions’ backyard.

They may have finished 11 points off the pace last term, and certainly lack the defensive resoluteness of their opponents, but have given their rivals a bloodied nose in recent seasons.

Most recently in April 2018 when a last gasp goal kept the title race alive when Juventus were threatening to run away with it.

Then, last season, they only had themselves to blame for failing to claim at least a point – even with 10 men.

Ancelotti still managed to guide Napoli to the runners-up spot ahead of the Milan giants, Lazio et al and now has had a full pre-season to put his stamp on the club.

He has added Hirving Lozano to the ranks and Lozano was officially unveiled as a Napoli player this week after he completed a €40 million transfer from PSV Eindhoven, the most expensive signing in the club’s history.

Who knows, perhaps he could be joined by Mauro Icardi from Inter Milan after the agent of free agent Fernando Llorente was spotted at the Inter HQ.

Ancelotti will also have Dries Mertens available to play this week after he avoided punishment after being accused of conning the referee as he won a penalty during that 4-3 victory over Fiorentina.

Intriguingly, it’s all change at Juventus with the arrival of Napoli’s former favourite son, and Ancelotti’s predecessor, Sarri.

With the exception of new signing Aaron Ramsey (hamstring), Juventus should be at full strength themselves but, for all the stars on show, the focus will be on Sarri in what should be his first game back in Serie A following his 12 months with Chelsea in the English Premier League.

He was initially due to miss the showdown as he was still being treated for a bout of pneumonia.

Indeed, the tactician had been struggling for several weeks and was eventually signed off by the club medic for the opening two Serie A games of the season -the club reportedly irritated by his refusal to stop smoking.

Serie A News: Maurizio Sarri could be back on the bench when Juventus face Napoli
Maurizio Sarri missed Juventus’s first match after being diagnosed with pneumonia

However, there are now rumours he has improved sufficiently to be in the home dugout against his old club.

Both on and off the pitch, there is so much to watch this weekend.

It has become the clash of Serie A in recent years: this could set the scene for 2019-20 too.

History

Last season, Juventus recorded 3-1 and 2-1 wins over Napoli with Mario Mandzukic and Emre Can proving the respective matchwinners.

It was much tighter the season before when both sides won 1-0 away from home.

Kalidou Koulibaly and ex-Neapolitan Gonzalo Higuain - now back at Juve after briefly following Sarri to west London – were the scorers.

While victory in Naples has traditionally been shared out, Juventus have the upper hand in their clashes in Turin with 46 Serie A victories to Napoli’s eight. A further 20 have ended all square.

Betting Tip

??

Juventus vs Napoli Correct score 1-1 @ 6.20
September 1, 02:45 (GMT+8)

Juventus 1X2 @ 1.98 and Napoli 1X2 @ 3.75 – the draw is @ 3.30 – shows how strongly the hosts are backed.

Asian Handicap -0.75 Juventus @ 2.25 grabbed my attention, as did over 2.50 goals @ 2.13.

Yet I’m going to be risky this weekend.

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03-Sep 2019 Tuesday 12:36 PM (15 days ago)            #28
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Serie A: Dramatic Chapter Ahead in the Derby Della Capitale

Lazio vs AS Roma

The second match day of the Serie A will feature a drama-filled affair between rivals Lazio and Roma in the Derby Della Capitale.

Both of these clubs had contrasting starts to kick off their respective seasons. Lazio annihilated Sampdoria with a 3-0 victory, while Roma’s match with Genoa ended with a 3-3 draw.

Even if they missed out on the Europa League qualifiers by a few points, Lazio came in with optimism this season after a summer to remember.

On the other hand, even if Roma did have a Europa League qualifiers spot last term, they became one of the league’s biggest losers over the summer since they were riddled with a lot of internal turmoil.

Expect a lot of Serie A 2019 highlights in this match as both teams are expected to give it their best in winning this match.

For now, let SBOBET offer you a review on these two clubs.

Talking points

Drama all over at Roma

Roma’s social media accounts were probably very active over the last summer after facing a lot of external scrutiny. After all, they’ve endured a major overhaul ever since they lost against Lazio in humiliating fashion last March.

Eusebio Di Francesco got fired after they were eliminated from the UEFA Champions League and sporting director Monchi followed suit as he went over to Sevilla in the La Liga.

Their defence became a whole lot weaker when they lost the likes of star defender Kostas Manolas, Luca Pellegrini, Stephan El Shaarawy and Steven Nzonzi.

From there, the Giallorossi added a new sporting director, new coach, new goal keeper, plus a slew of full-backs on defence and midfielders. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re going to add a new striker as well given that the transfer window is fast approaching.

But perhaps what really hurt Roma fans are the departures of club icons Daniele del Rossi and Francesco Totti – both in disappointing fashion.

The 36-year-old midfielder was not given a contract extension by Roma while Francesco Totti resigned from the team and held a controversial 90-minute press conference in which he lambasted the management.

Paul Foncesca will have the unenviable task of steering the sinking ship of Giallorossi to a new direction given everything that happened to them in the past few months.

It’s still early in the season -- but if their new signings of Leonardo Spinazzola, Amadou Diawara, Pau Lopez, Jordan Veretout, and Gianluca Mancini somehow pay off – at least they could salvage some hope along the way.

Lazio’s work under the shadows

Unlike Roma, Lazio experienced a relatively quiet offseason, but that doesn’t mean that the team didn’t experience any kind of success during that time.

They managed to keep the likes of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Luis Alberto, and Ciro Immobile – all who are looking to make amends from their lacklustre showing last term. They’ve also added Manuel Lazzari to their roster which is a great fit to Simone Inzaghi’s system.

Simone Inzaghi hopes fans would recognize SS Lazio squad more after potential victory over AS Roma in Serie A Derby Della Capitale
Lazio manager Simone Inzaghi gives directions to his players during the Italian Cup match against AC Milan at the San Siro stadium

Speaking of Inzaghi, he had more time to work with his players during the summer. Last May, the Biancocelesti won in the Coppa Italia for the seventh time, drawing level with Inter Milan while putting themselves in good company behind Roma and Juventus.

The club scored 59 goals in the preseason and they put out a great performance in the season opener against Sampadoria, which sometimes leave us to wonder as to why they haven’t been getting much attention as of late.

Inzaghi echoed such sentiments days after their first Serie A game. The young manager emphasized that his team should be more talked about as a force to be reckoned with in the league. Nonetheless, Lazio looks to be a contender, at least in the top 4 this season.

“There’s always little talk of Lazio and I’m used to it, but we’ve shown year-in-year-out that we read plays well,” said Inzaghi.

“There are teams [that are] much more talked about than us, although it changes little for me if people don’t say much about Lazio,” he added.

History

The Derby Della Capitale’s first match was back in December 1929 where Roma got the better of Lazio with a 1-0 victory.

In their previous match up, it was Lazio who came up big with a 3-0 win over Roma. It was their largest win in the Derby Della Capitale since 2006.

All in all, Lazio and Roma have met a total of 87 times prior to their match on Sunday.

Betting Tip

??

Lazio vs Roma Lazio Asian Handicap +0.00 @ 1.63
September 2, 12:00 (GMT+8)

Lazio is at 2.21 odds for a win while Roma is set at 3.05. The Serie A 2019 odds for a draw in this fixture are at 3.45.

Momentum is clearly on the side of the Biancocelesti, but one can’t simply count out Roma in this highly-anticipated matchup.

A lot of goals are to be expected in this match as recent history suggests. However, Roma’s shaky defence will give Lazio the slight advantage in this one.

If you were to ask me, the Biancocelesti will eke out a 3-2 win in this fixture at the Stadio Olimpico.

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03-Sep 2019 Tuesday 12:41 PM (15 days ago)            #29
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Serie A Classic Ends So Cruelly for Napoli

Juventus 4-3 Napoli

The new Serie A season may only be two weeks old, but it might have already produced the match of the season. Juventus and Napoli, the top two teams in each of the last three seasons, were scheduled for an early-season showdown, and it did not disappoint.

It seemed as if Juventus would stroll to a comfortable victory after going 3-0 ahead with less than half an hour remaining. But the Neapolitans staged a spirited second-half comeback to level it all up, only to be denied a well-deserved point in the cruellest way possible.

For Napoli, it's been a crazy start to their campaign as they've now been on opposite sides of a 4-3 scoreline. The Serie A 2019 odds of that happening were astronomical! As for Juve, their 100 per cent record remains intact as they remain on top of the table heading into the international break.

Highlights of the game

It was a relatively quiet opening quarter of an hour with both teams registering just one shot apiece. Cristiano Ronaldo unleashed a speculative strike from the edge of the penalty area in the fourth minute which was punched into touch by Alex Meret.

Cristiano Ronaldo hits a second-half goal to help Juventus seal a 4-3 Serie A win over Napoli
Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates after scoring the club's third goal against Napoli

Allan then had Napoli's first opportunity on 14 minutes as his powerful shot from distance forced a brilliant one-handed save from Juve keeper Wojciech Szczesny.

The Juventus corner was delayed due to an injury to Juve full-back Mattia De Sciglio, who had to be replaced by Danilo. And once the corner was finally taken, the Brazilian would make an immediate impact.

Juve caught the visitors out with a lightning-quick counter-attack led by Douglas Costa. The speedy winger dribbled into the Napoli penalty area and set up his compatriot Danilo, whose side-footed finish gave the hosts the lead.

Juve would double their advantage just a few minutes later through former Napoli hero Gonzalo Higuain. The Argentine managed to evade former team-mate Kalidou Koulibaly and uncorked an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net.

Higuain very nearly turned provider for Juventus' third goal at the half-hour mark as he laid the ball off to the on-rushing Sami Khedira. Unfortunately, his finish wasn't quite good enough to get it past Meret.

Khedira did successfully beat Meret just a couple minutes later with a brilliant long-range strike, but the unlucky German's shot cannoned back off the crossbar.

Down two goals, Napoli turned up the pressure to start the second half. Dries Mertens came close with a couple of attempts from distance.

However, Juventus would extend their lead to three just after the hour mark. Cristiano Ronaldo got on the end of a Douglas Costa cross to score what seemed like the goal that would put the game to bed. But as it turned out, the game was far from over.

Just three minutes later, Napoli pulled a goal back through new signing Kostas Manolas, who headed home from a free-kick. And five minutes after that, another of their new recruits -- Mexican winger Hirving Lozano -- scored a second to make it 3-2. Game back on.

And on 81 minutes, Napoli levelled it all up through a third newcomer in full-back Giovanni Di Lorenzo, who once again capitalised on less-than-stellar set-piece defending by the champions.

An epic comeback was suddenly in sight for Napoli. But as fate would have it, the fairy tale would quickly turn into a nightmare in stoppage time.

Kalidou Koulibaly, who famously scored a 90th-minute winner at the Juventus Stadium back in 2018 to keep Napoli in the title hunt, would score once again -- but this time, though, it would be an own goal.



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The star centre-back's attempted clearance of a Juventus free-kick catastrophically sliced right into the top corner of the Napoli net. It was a cruel, cruel way for Napoli to lose after such a valiant comeback. But those are the breaks of the game.

Key statistics

With Napoli being down for most of the match, they ended up with the superior statistics. They controlled 56 per cent of the possession and just edged out the shot total, 15-12. Although, both teams finished with seven shots on target and a handful of Serie A 2019 highlights.

After not featuring in the season opener against Parma, Matthijs de Ligt -- one of the top stars to watch this Serie A season -- got his first-ever Juventus start. He will need to fill in for most of the season after Giorgio Chiellini suffered a torn ACL and will be out until next year.

What's next?

Juventus' first match back from the international break will be against Fiorentina, who were on the losing end of another 4-3 match against Napoli. Juve boss Maurizio Sarri should be back on the sideline after missing the first two matches due to pneumonia.

As for Napoli, they will finally play their home opener after the break as they host Sampdoria at the San Paolo. It might be wise to check out the SBOBET odds for the over on that match after the 14 goals scored in Napoli's first two games.

 

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03-Sep 2019 Tuesday 12:44 PM (15 days ago)            #30
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Serie A: Points shared in Rome Derby

Lazio 1-1 Roma

Lazio and Roma drew 1-1 in the Serie A match of the day in an electrifying atmosphere at the Stadio Olimpico.

Paulo Fonseca’s Roma have now had two draws in their opening fixtures but they will be delighted to escape the Derby Della Capitale with a point, after Simone Inzaghi’s side made the better chances and hit the woodwork three times.

Roma went ahead when Aleksandar Kolarov converted a late first half penalty but Lazio

grabbed a deserved equaliser through Luis Alberto.

The early season Serie A 2019 betting odds don’t pitch the Rome teams as threats to Juventus’ crown but they will both be hunting a top four place, and on this showing Lazio has a good chance.

Highlights of the game

Luis Alberto rescue Lazio after he scores an equaliser against AS Roma in Serie A
Lazio's Luis Alberto celebrates after scoring during a Serie A match between Lazio and AS Roma

After a very productive pre-season and a winning start Lazio came into the game full of confidence and with all guns blazing. As early as the third minute Lucas Leiva picked up the ball from a corner, and his shot from just outside the penalty area crashed against the left hand post.

Roma have just completed the signing of centre back Chris Smalling from Manchester United to make the big Serie A 2019 news on Friday, and he started on the bench, with Federico Fazio and Gianluca Mancini continuing as the centre back pairing. And they came under more pressure, blocking a Ciro Immoble shot, and then watching the Italy striker firing over after good work from Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. Then Pau Lopez Sabata made a superb save in the bottom corner to deny Milinkovic-Savic.

But the big Serb was at the wrong end of the pitch when he had a part in the opening goal, handling the ball to give Roma a golden opportunity from the penalty spot.

Only SPAL’s keeper Marco Wolfli made more saves than Lazio’s Thomas Strakosha last week, but the Lazio stopper could do nothing as Aleksandar Kolarov slammed the spot kick home.

The Roma fans celebrated like they’d won the league, but Lazio went straight back on the attack, Sabata saving well when Immobile’s header looked destined to level the scores. And the Roma keeper was a spectator again when his woodwork shook, this time Immobile taking a headed pass from Milinkovic –Savic and firing his shot against the right hand post.

As the game continued at breath-taking pace Roma tried to fight back, Brian Cristante seeing a header blocked and then Nicolo Zaniolo smashing a shot from distance against Strakosha’s left hand post.

Immobile came close again for Lazio and Justin Kluivert almost finished off a fast break for Roma but screwed his shot wide. And, on the stroke of half time, Strakosha kept Lazio in touch with a great save from a Kolarov pile driver.

If Lazio were disappointed to go into the break behind, they didn’t show it at the start of the second half as Lucas Leiva tested Sabata with a low drive. And then the hosts got their reward when Immobile found Luis Alberto in space in the penalty area and he made no mistake, firing low into the corner.

That prompted an onslaught from Inzaghi’s side, with Joaquin Correa and Immobile both coming close, and then as the minutes ticked away Lazio hit the Roma woodwork again, this time Marco Parolo firing his shot against the crossbar.

But Lazio couldn’t quite get the winner they sought and Roma escaped with a point.



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Key statistics

After Juventus and Napoli put on a seven goal show in Turin yesterday, while the Rome teams couldn’t match the goals it wasn’t for the lack of trying. In an attacking contest Lazio won the first half shot count by 13 to eight and four to two on target.

Possession of the ball was shared, but Lazio continued to make more chances in the second period, eventually having 23 shots to Roma’s 11 and seven to three on target.

We predicted a tight game here at SBOBET and it so it was, but Roma has the woodwork to thank for their point as Lazio fans went home frustrated.

What’s next?

Next up, Inzaghi’s side is away to SPAL after the international break, and then Lazio travels to CFR Cluj in the Europa League Group E opener.

Meanwhile, Roma is at home to Sassuolo, before starting its own Europa League campaign at home to Istanbul Buyuksehir.

Both the Rome clubs will be eyeing the Europa League as a second chance to make next season’s Champions League.

 

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11-Sep 2019 Wednesday 1:45 PM (7 days ago)            #31
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Serie A: Juve Set for More Fun in Florence

Fiorentina vs Juventus

Serie A Champions Juventus head to the beautiful city of Florence this weekend with the aim of making it three wins from three at the start of the new campaign. Opponents Fiorentina hope to avoid a third defeat in three which would leave them at the wrong end of the table as things start to take shape. In their opening game at the Stadio Artemio Franchi Vincenzo Montella’s team lost 3-4 to Napoli after taking an early lead, and then they went down by the odd goal in three to Genoa. So the Viola has been in contention in both its games so far, and I expect the home team to have a chance or two, but when you need a win to get yourself going, Maurizio Sarri’s side is about the last you would want to confront.

Talking Points

Sarri means business After a fairly successful season as Chelsea coach, securing a top four finish and a Europa League triumph, Maurizio Sarri left the Premier League to return home, and he looks like a man on a mission. He wasn’t appreciated by everyone at Stamford Bridge but he’s on home turf now and he’s not about to let Juve’s grip on the Scudetto loosen. It’s no surprise that the Serie A 2019 betting odds have already installed the Old Lady as an odds on favourite to make it a ninth Scudetto in a row. Juve already had the best squad, but Sarri added Dutch defender Matthis De Ligt to his already stellar line-up. I Bianconeri won a seven goal thriller against title rivals Napoli, leading 3-0 with half an hour remaining, they were pegged back to 3-3 before a Kalidou Koulibaly own goal handed them all three points. The Serie A 2019 highlights package already has plenty of content from that game! You only have to look at I Bianconeri’s bench in that game to see what Fiorentina is up against. Paulo Dybala, Adrien Rabiot, Rodrigo Bentancur and Federico Bernarderschi would walk into most first elevens in Europe. But when you have the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo at the club, then a bench place isn’t such a bad achievement.

 


 

  Chiellini out Even De Ligt sat out Juve’s opener against Parma, which ended in a narrow 0-1 win thanks to a goal from veteran defender Giorgio Chiellini. But the Juventus legend has suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury and will be out for up to six months. He has already undergone surgery in Austria and hopes to be back by March. In the meantime De Ligt will look to form a centre back partnership with skipper Leonardo Bonucci. Viola’s star man on Juve’s radar As if I Bianconeri didn’t have enough talent in its squad, La Viola’s best player is hoping to join them before too long! The goals of Federico Chiesa kept Fiorentina up on the final day of last season but the striker has been vocal in his criticism of the club’s ambition, saying he would love a move to Juventus.

Fiorentina will be looking to claim their first Serie A win against Juventus
Fiorentina’s Federico Chiesa fights for the ball against Giovanni Di Lorenzo

At 21 years of age he already has 100 appearances for La Viola and is an Italy international, so Montella will hope to get one more season from him. Despite Fiorentina losing both their opening games, Chilean Erick Pulgar has netted twice, both penalties, and the defensive midfielder is showing signs he could be a leader on the pitch, vital for any team in trouble. Argentine centre back German Pezzella was made captain after his 11m Euros move from Real Betis and at 6ft 3 inches he’s a powerful presence at the heart of La Viola’s defence. Fiorentina needs to put on some style to match the steel of Pezzella and Pulgar.

History

La Viola has a proud history as twice winner of the Scudetto, and as the team graced by the great Gabriel Batistuta in the 1990s, when the club won the Coppa Italia and reached the final of the UEFA Cup. Fiorentina’s trophy cabinet is somewhat smaller than Juve’s of course; I Bianconeri has won 35 Scudettos and the last eight in a row. Recent history favours the Old Lady who did the double over Fiorentina last season and is unbeaten in four in this fixture.

Betting Tip

??

Fiorentina vs Juventus Over 2.50 @ 1.81
September 14, 21:00 (GMT+8)
The latest SBOBET odds tell us this isn’t a foregone conclusion as the hosts have been competitive in both their games so far. Fiorentina is at 4.60 to win with Juventus at 1.71 and the draw is 3.70. It will be a tough task for La Viola, but they will have a go, having scored four in two games so far.

A SHORT EXPLANATION ON HOW OUR (??) BETS ARE WORTH:
?? = €20 (Highly confident) ?? = €10 (CONFIDENT) ?? = €5 (SOMEWHAT CONFIDENT)

Disclaimer: Odds are correct at time of publish.

 

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