Sampdoria - Verona
Yet to win a game this season, Verona have at least drawn more often than they have lost. A sixth stalemate in nine games is probably as much as they will aim for away to Sampdoria, who have dropped only two points at home so far.
The Blucerchiati have been in a little bit of a rut lately, failing to win any of their last three games, and Walter Zenga’s first attempt at integrating Antonio Cassano into his starting line-up backfired badly as they slipped to a 2-0 defeat at Frosinone. But with Roberto Soriano back to replace him behind the attack, I think they’re a solid value to take all three points.
Home win - 2.0
Milan - Sassuolo
We have not yet reached the end of October and already Gazzetta dello Sport believe that Sinisa Mihajlovic is “hanging by a thread” at Milan. That might be overstating things, but the club’s hierarchy are certainly not delighted with results so far this season. Ten points from eight games is not nearly enough for a club that splashed out €90m on new signings in the summer.
And if Mihajlovic’s job really is under threat, then Sassuolo might be the last team he’d want to face. Not only are they fourth in the table and playing excellently under Eusebio Di Francesco, but they have also been something of a bogey team for Milan, beating them three times in four league meetings since achieving promotion to Serie A in 2013. Massimiliano Allegri, indeed, was fired by Milan after losing 4-3 to Sassuolo in January 2014.
Double chance: draw or away win - 2.06
Juventus - Atalanta
The absence of Carlos Tevez continues to be felt by Juventus, who have failed to score against Inter and then Borussia Monchengladbach over the past week. That said, it might also help if Allegri included his most prolific player in the starting line-up. Paulo Dybala has grabbed either a goal or an assist in every league game he has started since joining the Bianconceri, and yet was used only as a late sub in each of the last two matches, playing a combined 21 minutes.
With or without him, Juve will expect to beat Atalanta - but we should note that the visitors have exceeded expectations and sit eighth in the table. Boasting one of the division’s stingiest defences, I think they will at least keep this game tight.
Under 2.5 goals - 1.98
Udinese - Frosinone
Yet to win a home game at their remodeled home ground, Udinese have lost to Palermo and Empoli already at the Friuli. Odds of just 1.7 on the home win are hard to justify in that context, and especially when Frosinone have beaten Empoli and Sampdoria, as well as drawing away to Juventus, in their last four games.
Draw no bet: away win - 3.9
Fiorentina - Roma
Fiorentina have not conceded a single goal in four Serie A home games under Paulo Sousa. Throw in the fact that Edin Dzeko, Francesco Totti and Iago Falqué have all missed time recently with injuries, and I was beginning to think that the odds on the home clean sheet looked pretty generous.
But then Roma put four past Bayer Leverkusen on Tuesday, to go with the three they scored against Empoli last Saturday and the four they managed against Palermo before that. So let’s keep things simple and say that I still like Fiorentina to prevail in this first-versus-second clash.
Home win - 2.55
Lazio - Torino
Between them, Lazio and Torino are scoring 75% of their goals after half-time. Perhaps there is an element of chance here, but, as I discussed in my Expert Minute this week, it is also true that Stefano Pioli and Giampiero Ventura are both cautious managers who like to get their teams settled and playing football before they start to worry about going for the jugular.
Both teams to score in the second half - 3.70
Chievo - Napoli
Nobody in Italy is playing better football than Napoli right now. In their last eight games across all competitions, the Partenopei have scored an incredible 24 goals whilst conceding only three. But whilst they won seven of those matches, the one draw came away from home against a modest Carpi team who defended well and denied them the space to play.
Chievo are a far better team than Carpi and adept at squeezing the life out of an opponent when necessary. They have conceded just twice at the Bentegodi and have beaten both Lazio and Torino there. For all that Napoli have been brilliant during their present run, we may also note that the league table still shows that they have won only once in four Serie A away games so far.
Draw no bet: home win - 3.25