Parma 2.45, the draw 3.15, Fiorentina 2.90
Amauri returns from injury just in time to show his former team what they are not missing. The striker rejoined Parma this summer after being released by Fiorentina – for whom he scored just once in 13 games last season – but has not yet been fit to play. He will be hoping to recapture the form which brought him seven goals in 11 appearances during a previous loan spell with the Ducali at the beginning of 2011.
If there might be a temptation to bet on the striker scoring against his old club, it should probably be resisted. Amauri will not necessarily start, and is unlikely to be as productive as he was with Sebastian Giovinco alongside him. Instead consider Fiorentina, impressive so far this season, for the away win at 2.9.
Juventus 1.34, the draw 5.2, Chievo 8.5
"Sooner or later Juventus will lose a league game," asserted the Chievo goalkeeper Stefano Sorrentino this week, and though he is doubtless correct the smart money says it will probably be later. Nevertheless, if you are feeling bold then a punt on the draw at 5.2 might not be as crazy as it sounds. That has been the outcome of each of the last four meetings between these teams in Serie A.
Sampdoria 2.1, the draw 3.3, Torino 3.5
They might not sit alongside Juventus, Napoli and Lazio at the top of Serie A, but Sampdoria have had just as bright a start to the season, winning all of their first three games. They trail those teams in the standings only on account of the one-point deduction they were given as a consequence of this summer’s match-fixing investigations.
Samp defeated another of their fellow newly-promoted teams, Pescara, last weekend but while the Biancazzurri lost key players and their manager over the summer, Torino have instead strengthened. This ought to be a close game, especially with Sampdoria losing Andrea Poli to injury, but consider a bet on Samp’s Maxi Lopez to score in the game – as he has three times already this season.
Atalanta 1.8, the draw 3.6, Palermo 4.35
Just the three games were required for Maurizio Zamparini to lose patience with his latest managerial appointment, the Palermo owner sacking Giuseppe Sannino and making Gian Piero Gasperini the 18th different manager of his 10-year tenure with the club. (Bear in mind several of those have had more than one stint in charge in that time.)
Can Gasperini provide the lift often associated with new appointments? Maybe. Will it be enough to get his team a result in Bergamo? Doubtful. Palermo have won just one of their last 20 away games. Take the home win at 1.8.
Bologna 1.7, the draw 3.4, Pescara 5.4
Pescara are in trouble, that defeat to a Sampdoria team who finished 16 points behind them in Serie B last year bringing home quite how large a step back they took over the summer. Bologna only got their first win of the season last week, rebounding from two goals down to beat Roma at the Stadio Olimpico. With Alessandro Diamanti playing well, Alberto Gilardino scoring his first goals for the club last weekend and Pescara having conceded three goals in each of their games so far, take Bologna to win even while giving up a goal in the three-way handicap market at 2.95.
Cagliari 3.25, the draw 3.3, Roma 2.15
The return to Zemanlandia has been every bit as unpredictable as predicted for Roma, who have played some of their best football in years yet somehow also failed to beat Catania or Bologna at home. Injuries to Daniele De Rossi and Michael Bradley leave the Giallorossi short of midfielders capable of shielding the defence from further damage.
Such unreliability makes Zeman’s Roma a tricky betting proposition, but if you are inclined to have a wager on this game it might be worth looking at options that would normally appear counter-intuitive. While it feels likely that this game will be high-scoring, for example, you do not often see odds as high as 2.55 available for under 2.5 goals in a game. That could be worth considering.
Catania 3.0, the draw 3.2, Napoli 2.4
The only Italian team to win in Europe this week (the others all drew), Napoli were able to rotate heavily for their game against Sweden’s AIK. They still cruised to a 4-0 win at home, Eduardo Vargas getting his first goal for the club and swiftly upgrading that into his first hat-trick. Nevertheless he is likely to be back on the bench on Sunday, making way for Edinson Cavani and Goran Pandev.
With Lorenzo Insigne also available and playing well, Napoli having an imposing set of options up front. They have scored fewer than two goals only once in their last nine Serie A fixtures, and against a Catania team who have already conceded six in their three games this season, I would take the away win at 2.4.
Inter 1.44, the draw 4.0, Siena 8.5
Will this be the game in which the curse of the new San Siro pitch is finally lifted? Neither Inter nor Milan have achieved a home win since the new, partially synthetic surface was laid this summer. They have now had a combined seven attempts between league and Europe. Inter are playing the better of the two and this fixture represents their best opportunity yet to get the monkey off their backs. Nevertheless, Siena are tempting at 2.75 in the double chance market.
Lazio 1.57, the draw 4.0, Genoa 5.75
Vladimir Petkovic’s perfect start as Lazio coach came to an end on Thursday night, not that he will be complaining. A 0-0 draw away to Tottenham represented a perfectly respectable start to the Europa League group stage, and now his team will look to pick up where they left off in Serie A against a Genoa side who have not won away from home since last December. With Lazio having conceded just once in three games under Petkovic, bet on them to keep another clean sheet at 2.3.