Serie A Betting: Super Mario to decide Milan derby


One of the football calendar's standout games takes place on Sunday evening, as Inter face Milan at the San Siro. The form of the two sides could barely more contrasting but derby games, as we know, can be a law unto themselves...

Team news

Milan will welcome Mario Balotelli - who was cup-tied for the Champions League win over Barcelona - back to their starting XI. The striker has been in unstoppable form since making the switch from Manchester City, scoring four goals in three matches. Max Allegri could leave out Giampaolo Pazzini, although the 28-year-old did well in midweek. Inter will be missing Diego Milito, who has been ruled out for the season, meaning Antonio Cassano and Rodrigo Palacio will pair up in attack. Uruguayan Alvaro Pereira is suspended.

Form

Two Europa League wins over Cluj have papered over the cracks in the Inter form book; the Nerazzuri have suffered heavy defeats against Siena and Fiorentina in their last three domestic matches. Milan, on the other hand, are flying. Unbeaten since the winter break, their 2-0 victory against Barca underlined the progress they have made in recent months.

Can Fredy Guarin (right) fire Inter to glory?


Head-to-head

Inter have won the last three Milan derbies, two 1-0 wins when they were nominally the 'away' side sandwiching a 4-2 thriller in May 2012. Recent meetings suggest that 'no' in the Both Teams to Score market (2.10) could be the way to go: seven of the last nine have ending with just one side finding the net.

Goalscorer betting

It's hard to look past Balotelli, given his recent exploits. The 22-year-old is 5.25 to net the opener, while the 2.55 available on him scoring anytime looks exceptional value. For Inter, midfielder Fredy Guarin (5.50 anytime) has shown an eye for goal, while the ever-reliable Esteban Cambiasso is at 24.00 to score last.

Verdict

Milan look a good bet outright at 2.25, but even better odds can be found for the more daring. The Rossoneri have been winning at half-time and full-time in three of their last five games, and are at 3.70 to repeat the trick.

Score prediction: Inter 1-3 Milan (18.00)