Serie A Betting: Juventus to end Milan's spell of luck


Saturday

Chievo 2.3, the draw 3.1, Atalanta 3.2

Last Sunday was a good day for the Atalanta manager Stefano Colantuono.  Not only did his team record a 2-0 home win over Udinese, but afterwards a member of stadium staff showed up with a special gift. “Nadia gave me a whole tray of pastries, the ones from the VIP section,” Colantuono told reporters. “I took them home and ate all of them.”

It was a rare moment of joy for the manager in what has been a trying start to the season; Atalanta had just three points from their previous five games. Things are not going any better for his Chievo counter-part Giuseppe Sannino, however – the Flying Donkeys scraping together just four points so far. With not much to choose between the teams, I would counsel the draw at 3.1.

Inter 2.2, the draw 3.4, Roma 3.1

While the rest of Serie A’s front-runners resumed European competition this week, Inter and Roma could focus on preparing to face one another. Both teams have begun their campaigns brightly, and Fredy Guarín told Gazzetta dello Sport that having one less competition to focus on had been a major advantage. “It gives you more time to work on little details,” he said, “when otherwise you might be travelling.”

Inter will need to get all of those details right if they are to overcome opponents who have won six games out of six, scoring 17 goals and conceding just one. Worryingly for the Nerazzurri, they have not beaten Roma in any of their last seven attempts. Away win. 

Sunday

Parma 1.55, the draw 4.0, Sassuolo 5.6

In the last week-and-a-half, Sassuolo have secured draws with both Napoli and Lazio – and yet they remain rooted to the foot of the table. There has been much optimistic talk of claiming a first-ever Serie A win this weekend in Parma, but the hosts’ own recent improvement makes that seem unlikely. Instead try the under 2.5 goals at 1.95. Half of Parma’s eight goals this season came in a single game, while Sassuolo have found the net just once in three away fixtures. 

Bologna 2.1, the draw 3.3, Verona 3.25

“Verona have not won away to Bologna since 1978,” yelped the headline on Telenuovo’s website this week. “Although, actually, that statistic is not as compelling as it first looks, since the fixture has only been played seven times since then,” they curiously failed to add. 

In fact, Verona ought to be full of optimism for this trip, having already collected seven more points than their opponents. Hellas’s only defeats thus far have been away to Juventus and Roma. They will miss the injured Vangelis Moras in central defence, but with Luca Toni in fine form up front and Rafael excelling in goal, they are good value for the draw.

Catania 2.2, the draw 3.2, Genoa 3.25

After three years apart, both Genoa and Gian Piero Gasperini have finally concluded that the grass is not greener on the other side. “I’m back home,” said the manager as he returned to the club this week, before immediately putting the footballing furniture back into the formation he had left it in. Genoa will line up on Sunday in his long-preferred 3-4-3.

It is hard to know exactly what to expect so soon after a managerial change, but if there was one thing that Gasperini’s teams usually guarantee, it is goals at both ends. Try the over 2.5 goals at 2.0.

Napoli 1.25, the draw 5.75, Livorno 10.0

After a chastening defeat in London, Napoli return home to what should be an altogether more straightforward fixture. Similar sentiments were expressed before the draw against Sassuolo, of course, but that is all the more reason to believe that complacency should be avoided this time around. Take Napoli to win with the one-goal handicap at 4.1.

Sampdoria 2.5, the draw 3.1, Torino 2.85

The Torino striker Ciro Immobile has called on his team to put last week’s derby defeat to Juventus behind them, writing on Facebook that “if we don’t stop thinking about it soon we’ll never be able to move on psychologically”. It is hard to put an event behind you mentally, however, when the physical repercussions still linger all around. Both Omar El Kaddouri and Guillermo Rodriguez are expected to miss this match as a result of injuries sustained while playing against Juve. 

Sampdoria have lost all three of their home games to date, failing to score even once. But two of those were against Roma and Juventus, while the other was their own derby against Genoa. We’ll have a better idea of their qualities after this game against a bruised Torino. I am tempted by the home win. 

Udinese 1.85, the draw 3.5, Cagliari 4.0

The Cagliari captain Daniele Conti warned this week that he was prepared to consider strike action unless his team’s stadium situation was resolved soon. “We’ve been playing away from home now for two years solid,” he said. “It’s difficult [to play] without our fans.” Sadly it is even more difficult to believe at this stage that the various stand-offs between team and local authorities will be resolved any time soon.

For now, Cagliari have a real away trip, to face an Udinese team that has not been beaten in its own stadium for 21 games. Stick with the home win.  

Juventus 1.58, the draw 3.85, Milan 5.5

A frustrating week so far for Juventus, who battled back from a goal down at home to Galatasaray – taking the lead with three minutes remaining – only to then concede an equaliser just seconds later. Conversely, it has been a fortuitous week for Milan, whose 1-1 draw away to Ajax was achieved only with the help of a generous penalty award at the death. 

But the spot-kick in question was both won and converted by Mario Balotelli, who will miss this game through suspension. Juventus are yet to recapture their best form from last year, but I still expect them to win this game. 

Lazio 2.3, the draw 3.2, Fiorentina 3.1

Where Italy’s Champions League representatives struggled, both Lazio and Fiorentina emerged with credit from their Europa League fixtures on Thursday. The Biancocelesti had trailed 3-1 away to Trabzonspor with seven minutes remaining, but snatched a draw through two late goals from Sergio Floccari. The Viola beat Dnipro 2-1 in Ukraine. 

Domestically, neither team has quite lived up to the high expectations generated during strong 2012-13 campaigns. Both have defended poorly at times, conceding 18 goals between them. The overs are well-priced at 1.95. 


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