Bologna - Roma
The most prolific team in Serie A, Roma had built their attacking successes in great part on the explosive pace of Mohamed Salah and Gervinho. Now both are unavailable, the Ivorian joining the Egyptian on the injury list with a thigh strain suffered on international duty. He is not expected back for three weeks.
That leaves manager Rudi Garcia in a pickle, contemplating whether to try the long out-of-favour Juan Iturbe as a jet-heeled alternative or change his team’s approach completely. You might contend that Roma should be good enough to beat 17th-placed Bologna regardless, but the Rossoblu have won both games they have played since appointing Roberto Donadoni as manager.
Draw no bet: home win - 3.65
Juventus - Milan
Gigi Buffon celebrated the 20th anniversary of his Serie A debut this week. It was against Milan that the goalkeeper made his bow for Parma at 17 years old - thwarting George Weah and Roberto Baggio on the way to a clean sheet. This weekend, the Rossoneri will line up against him with a teenage goalkeeper of their own, Gianluigi Donnarumma, between the sticks.
The youngster has already been billed as Buffon’s heir with the national team. Mattia Perin might have something to say about that, but certainly Donnarumma is off to a strong start. In four games he has kept two clean sheets - which is two more than Milan’s previous starter, Diego López, had managed in eight matches before that.
Donnarumma’s task in Turin, though, will be tougher. Juventus have scored seven times in their last three Serie A home games, and I anticipate seeing more goals this Saturday.
Over 2.5 goals - 2.08