Serie A Fantasy Preview – Round 36


Bologna: they stayed in the game until the end but they could not perforate Atalanta’s defence and, result-wise, they have been on a pretty steep downward trajectory. They could use some offensive help because Musa Barrow and Roberto Soriano have been the only ones producing in the last month, since Riccardo Orsolini’s effectiveness has abated, Nicola Sansone has not been great all season long and Rodrigo Palacio, while being a tactical weapon, is not very prolific. Deploying Federico Santander and Andreas Skov Olsen has not changed things and they also lost one of their most trusted contributors in Takehiro Tomiyasu. However, the match-up could help their attackers get off their schneid.

Suggested picks: Barrow, Soriano, Orsolini.

Lecce: Gianluca Lapadula returned to the XI with a brace and surely their style requires a goal poacher up front, something that Khouma Babacar could not pull off. With an assist coming from the easy opponent, Brescia, Riccardo Saponara put his name in the stat-sheet after ages, so they now have two more in-form offensive contributors to aid Marco Mancosu, who has been carrying them. Little flashes from Filippo Falco, who is however not 100 percent, while Babacar and Diego Farias were on the shelf one Wednesday. The other one scoring lately has been Yevhen Shakhov, who could have a decent role if the absences are confirmed.

Suggested picks: Lapadula, Mancosu, Saponara.


Cagliari: another loss for them versus Lazio, where the result would have been way worse if it was not for Alessio Cragno’s heroics. A random goal by Giovanni Simeone gave the opponents a scare, but their offense has slowed down dramatically over the last few matches. Joao Pedro scored against Sassuolo and their strikers’ duo is the only one that has some decent fantasy value with Radja Nainggolan on the shelf. Nahitan Nandez and Marko Rog have had some good moments, but they primarily focus on the less flashy parts of the game. Artur Ionita, Valter Birsa and Gaston Pereiro have not been able to step up despite their opportunities.

Suggested picks: Simeone, Pedro.

Udinese: despite being undermanned, they somehow found a way to prevail against Juventus through stout defending and a late wondergoal by Seko Fofana. The powerhouse is now up to three goals and seven assists in the season. Ilija Nestorovski bagged the equalizer and he is worth a look if Kevin Lasagna is sidelined again, while Stefano Okaka is more of a work-rate guy. The injuries in the midfield forced them to move Rodrigo De Paul to deep-lying playmaker and, while he was splendid on Thursday, the role is less offensive than his usual one. Ken Sema picked up a great assist and is starting to look like a menace like in the pre-lockdown months.

Suggested picks: Nestorovski, Fofana, De Paul.


Roma: a downpour of goals predictably arrived versus SPAL, but not necessarily through the attackers, as Bruno Peres put together a brace and Aleksander Kolarov rifled one home from distance. Nikola Kalinic and Carles Perez fully exploited the match-up and the latter might be given some good minutes here as well, even though Nicolò Zaniolo is looming at this point and he has been tremendous even in small cameos. The fulcrums of their attack Edin Dzeko and Henrikh Mkhitaryan will be well-rested for this one and they have racked up bonuses lately, while Lorenzo Pellegrini has been more less effective. Peres and Leonardo Spinazzola have become weapons in their new formation and also Jordan Veretout has had more offensive opportunities.

Suggested picks: Mkhitaryan, Dzeko, Zaniolo.

Fiorentina: their good run of form continued with a nil-nil tie against Inter, even though the offense was predictably stymied. Patrick Cutrone has been their most consistent guy with three goals in the last four matches and Christian Kouame is coming along nicely. Franck Ribery has been a creative force, while Federico Chiesa has looked re-energized out on the flank and they benefitted because their fullback had been rather uninspiring. Gaetano Castrovilli is suspended, so it should be Rachid Ghezzal and Alfred Duncan as box-to-box and they are both medium-range fantasy options.

Suggested picks: Cutrone, Kouame, Ribery. 


SPAL: Andrea Cerri bagged what turned out to be the consolation goal in the Roma match, in jaw-dropping manner too, but he hurt his hand in the process and his status is up in the air. Andrea Petagna has not made the stat-sheet in seven matches, their only other goals in the past month have been scored by Bryan Dabo, Sergio Floccari and Mattia Valoti, but the last two are banged up, like Lucas Castro. Marco D’Alessandro and Gabriel Stefezza can be peppy, but it depends on what kind of collective effort they put in at this point.

Suggested picks: Petagna, D’Alessandro, Strefezza.

Torino: they are coming off a quality tie against Verona, where Simone Zaza notched in fifth goal of the season and the second in the last four appearances. So he is contributing concretely to the offense on top of being a can opener for Andrea Belotti, who had hit the net seven times in a row prior to the last two matches. The easy match-up should mitigate their road woes and help out seesawing players like Simone Verdi and Ola Aina, who will take over on the right flank since Lorenzo De Silvestri hurt his shoulder. Cristian Ansaldi provided an assist versus the Scaligeri and he is coming back to the forefront.

Suggested picks: Belotti, Zaza, Verdi.


Verona: their committee of attackers struck again in Turin and this time it was Fabio Borini who scored through a PK, snapping out of a personal scoring slump. Samuel Di Carmine has been put aside with Eddie Salcedo taking in the reins as false-nine in the past two matches, although their lineup, even in key roles, is a week-to-week proposition. Matteo Pessina has been their most prolific player, Borini, Valerio Verre and Mattia Zaccagni have potential as well, depending on the amount of playing time each get. Darko Lazovic has lost some steam after a hot start after the hiatus.

Suggested picks: Pessina, Salcedo, Borini.

Lazio: Luis Alberto and Joaquin Correa came back in the Cagliari bout and the Biancocelesti looked like themselves again, creating a bunch of good opportunities and ultimately finalizing two, thanks to a banger by Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and a typical finish by Ciro Immobile, who has definitely shaken off some rust. Manuel Lazzari is suspended and Adam Marusic will try to bounce back after a tough stretch injury-wise, while Jony has not really turned it up on the other flank despite the ample playing time. Felipe Caicedo is set to lose value with Correa back in the fold and he has not been great anyway.

Suggested picks: Immobile, Alberto, Milinkovic-Savic.


Juventus: they could not work around Udinese’s defence on Thursday, fumbling away their first match point for the Scudetto. In a frustrating night for Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala and the rest of the attackers, it was Matthijs De Ligt who hit the net. Despite their glaring imperfections, they will be in a better spot here and their star forwards are always recommendable picks. Adrien Rabiot and Juan Cuadrado have been on the rise, with some bonuses as well, Rodrigo Bentancur instead has been more subdued than before. Douglas Costa, Alex Sandro and Miralem Pjanic’s form come and go, Federico Bernardeschi is constantly underperforming while Aaron Ramsey has been poor but might bust out at any moment given his history.

Suggested picks: Ronaldo, Dybala, Cuadrado.

Sampdoria: they did not rise to the occasion in the Derby della Lanterna, although Manolo Gabbiadini found the target for the fourth time in the last six tilts. Fabio Quagliarella and Federico Bonazzoli also delivered a decent deal of damage lately, which gives them three functioning strikers at the same time, a true rarity. Gaston Ramirez instead has fallen in the wayside with the others surging and they have been resistant to fielding three truly offensive players at the same time. In their crowded and pretty average midfield, Morten Thorsby and Jakub Jankto have been the ones picking up bonuses in recent outings through assists, while Karol Linetty is arguably the best of the bunch quality-wise.

Suggested picks: Quagliarella, Gabbiadini, Bonazzoli.

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