Latest News

Saturday, July 18, 2020

Serie A Tips: Last shot at a Scudetto race

Serie A Tips: Last shot at a Scudetto race

Dave Farrar predicts Lazio will give Juventus a run for their money, Sampdoria continue their strong form at Parma and Milan entertain with Bologna...

Last chance saloon for Lazio

Juventus v Lazio
Monday, 20:45
Live on Premier Sports 1 and Betfair Live Video
With two teams so out of form, it's desperately hard to pick a winner on Monday night in Turin, but the remainder of the Serie A title race depends on Lazio beating Juventus. If Inter can win in Rome on Sunday, and then Lazio beat Juve on Monday, then we have a three-point gap at the top (four really, if you include the head to head), and we still have an outside chance of the Scudetto show carrying on until the final day. If Juve can win, and they're 1.72 to do so, then it is surely all over.
Juventus have picked up just two points from a possible nine, and that has let Inter close the gap at the top to six. Had Atalanta and Sassuolo both beaten Maurizio Sarri's team, which they easily could have done, then the title race would currently be a white knuckle ride, but Juve have just found enough spirit and good fortune to keep their noses in front, and now a team with an uncanny ability to conjure up results will be asked to do so again.
Both of these sides are tired. Lazio looked shattered against Udinese on Wednesday night and Simone Inzaghi's inability to rotate because of injury and suspension has affected them badly. Juve, too, are sleepwalking, and I'm pleased that this grandstand game is on a Monday night, with that extra day's recovery helping both teams produce something near their best.
The prices in the Match Odds market are wrong. I don't see this as a 50/50, but Juve aren't a 1.72 shot, and a simple lay of them against a team which has beaten them twice this season would make sense. I'm interested by the way that Juve are playing at the moment, though, and can't look beyond the vulnerability which has grown alongside their evident quality.
Juve's last six have all gone Over 3.5 Goals, and with Lazio determined to have one last dart at the title, I'm sure that we'll see an open game, and maybe one to remember.

Unstoppable Samp

Parma v Sampdoria
Sunday, 16:15
Live on Premier Sports 1 and Betfair Live Video
Sampdoria began after the season's restart in very real danger of relegation from Serie A, but while their city rivals Genoa have been floundering of late, and remain just outside the relegation zone, Samp have flourished, and have now won four of their last five games to take them away from the bottom three, and within shooting distance of a top 10 finish.
Claudio Ranieri deserves huge credit, and this weekend, his team travel to a side who have gone in the opposite direction since lockdown. Parma were as high as seventh in the table at the end of January, but they've lost five of their last six and look to be tumbling fast.
Samp have improved in front of goal, and have now scored three times in three of their last four games (only Atalanta stopped them) - that's useful form, especially against a Parma side who haven't kept a clean sheet since the 16th February.
I would say that Samp are fairly certain to score more than once here, and they rate excellent value with no home crowd to worry about at 2.72.

More Milan entertainment

Milan v Bologna
Saturday, 20:45
Live on Premier Sports 2 and Betfair Live Video
Milan have played their way into a Europa League spot with their post lockdown form, and they should be able to make it five wins out of seven as they host Bologna at San Siro on Saturday.
Stefano Pioli deserves immense credit for the way that he has dealt with the impending appointment of Ralf Rangnick as his successor, and deserves a strong finish from his team, one that at least will get him the level of job that he deserves, even if it isn't with the Rossoneri.
A feature of the Milan run has been their open and entertaining style, and given that Bologna like to play that way too, I can see this being a game which is full of goalsFour of Milan's last five games have gone Over 3.5 Goals (the other was the 3-0 win at Lazio) and there's no real reason to move away from that expectation here.
Both teams have scored in each of Bologna's last six, which gives you an idea that they will give it a go here, and so this is a fairly simple equation which leads us to a bet on over 3.5 goals at around the 2.60 mark.