Atalanta: Duvan Zapata will be a late call for this one, but they downed Sampdoria even without him as Luis Muriel led the way despite not scoring, setting up a goal and constantly challenging the opposing defender. Ruslan Malinovskyi stepped up and fired home the second goal of his season, which could earn him more playing time moving forward. However, the squabble between Josip Ilicic and Gian Piero Gasperini was quickly resolved and therefore he is set to continue seeing regular minutes, much to the chagrin of Malinovskyi and Aleksey Miranchuk. The mercurial Slovenian subbed in well over the weekend but has not produced in recent outings, although he can break out in any moment and the match-up is certainly ripe. Who instead never abates is Robin Gosens, who has picked up points in five straight matches, scoring three times and adding one assist. He is up to eight and four in the season. Joakim Maehle has also been quite effective on the right flank and the chemistry between the two wing-backs is improving. Marten De Roon is suspended so it is likely one between Matteo Pessina and Mario Pasalic will play in a more defensive role, but, in any case, they have been major fantasy assets up to this point despite their tactical importance in their design.
Suggested picks: Muriel, Malinovskyi/Zapata, Gosens.
Crotone: the Squali played an okay game versus Cagliari, but they were unable to finalize for the fourth time in the past five matches. Adam Ounas has been their best guy since joining, and the lone scorer in the recent stretch, outplaying even their usual leader Junior Messias, who is in a little lull. Samuel Di Carmine has gotten a lot of minutes but has not really been exploited them, so Simy (seven goals) remains lurking and could return to the XI in this one. They likely lost one of their best players Salvatore Molina, as he was stretchered off with a knee injury, and also Milos Vulic subbed off early and they were by far their two most fantasy-friendly midfielders, while Niccolò Zanellato, Jacopo Petriccione and Eduardo Henrique are more gritty and workmanlike contributors. Arkadiusz Reca (one goal, three assists) was partially given the day off over the weekend and should be fresh for this one.
Suggested picks: Ounas, Messias, Reca.
Benevento: they could not keep up with Napoli and got very little going offensively. Their front-line has mostly sputtered over the last two months, accounting for a grand total of two goals in the last five matches, scored by Nicolas Viola and Gianluca Caprari. Their defensive posture does not help their attackers, plus Gianluca Lapadula and Roberto Insigne have not been particularly prolific of their own. Adolfo Gaich had a solid cameo in the last game and would have some appeal if given the start, also Marco Sau (three goals, two assists) could be on the radar if in the XI as his output is pretty strong related to his minutes. Viola has been impressive but he might have to be managed due to the condensed schedule. They would lack pizzazz in the midfield without him because Riccardo Improta and Iago Falque are currently shelved and Perparim Hetemaj and Artur Ionita are mostly plodding. They could instead got a boost in the back if Gaetano Letizia (three goals) was ready for more minutes as he has been a surprisingly important playmaker considering his role.
Suggested picks: Caprari/Sau, Viola/Insigne, Lapadula/Gaich.
Verona: Antonin Barak showed up once again in the Juventus clash and he has been on a tear with two goals and one helper over the last three rounds, further padding his seasonal stats. He was assisted by the resurgent Darko Lazovic, who had fallen a bit to the background with Federico Dimarco excelling on that flank: it is likely going to be a duel moving forward since Dimarco had some troubles as aggressive center-back. Mattia Zaccagni is always in the thick of it, but he has not been able to make the stat-sheet in four straight matches. He could be due since he has tallied six goals and five helpers in the season. Kevin Lasagna was engulfed in the previous match, but the going should be a little easier in this one and, even though he has misfired, he is putting up more shots here compared to his time at Udinese. Miguel Veloso saw the most minute in a while in the past game and he has higher ceiling than Ivan Ilic due to his set piece prowess, while their gritty midfielders Adrien Tameze and Stefano Sturaro generally do not contribute much to the offense. Marco Davide Faraoni is always solid on the right wing and recently hit the net.
Suggested picks: Barak, Zaccagni, Lasagna.
Cagliari: Joao Pedro and Leonardo Pavoletti both contributed in the first game under Leonardo Semplici, paving the way to a key victory. While Pedro (12 goals, two assists) has been a constant presence throughout the campaign, Pavoletti had not scored since late November. The goal could help him in the duel with Giovanni Simeone, who has not hit the net in a long time. Charalampos Lykogiannis unsurprisingly dished an assist as they relied on crosses a lot, but he got sent off. It should be Kwadwo Asamoah getting the start, but his level of form is uncertain and he has different traits. Nahitan Nandez looked good playing wide on the right, which dents the value of Gabriele Zappa, but it will probably be a week-to-week proposition as the Uruguayan midfielder can feature in multiple positions. Radja Nainggolan was used in a less dynamic role but has not really been the quality addition they hoped he would, while Razvan Marin is quietly on the up-and-up and some bonus potential. Alfred Duncan is also moderately interesting if he gets up legs fully underneath him as he has been prone to tallying goals and assists in the past.
Suggested picks: Pedro, Pavoletti, Nandez.
Bologna: they grabbed their first signature win of the season against Lazio thanks to an odd scorer, Ibrahima Mbaye, and to a more familiar one, Nicola Sansone, who has hit the net twice in the past four matches, adding a pair of helpers. Musa Barrow has not found the target in the past three matches, but he has been busy setting up teammates and he is faring well as center-forward. Riccardo Orsolini and Skov Olsen have been brought down by their personal competition, while Roberto Soriano returned to the stat-sheet in the previous round and will be looking to find the stellar consistency he had earlier in the season. Mattias Svanberg and Nicolas Dominguez have started together in the last pair of matches and that gives them more punch in the midfield, but it remains to be seen how long that will last. The Swedish youngster is generally more of an offensive weapon than the Argentinian international.
Suggested picks: Sansone, Barrow, Soriano.
Genoa: they basically forfeited the Inter game even though, result-wise, they hanged around for longer than they should have had since they barely generated any offense. Mattia Destro is set to be back in the XI and will try to snap out of short slump, while Eldor Shomurodov had found the target in the past game. Miha Zajc and Davide Zappacosta are also poised to resume starting after being given the day off and they have both been decent threats in the last few weeks, the midfielder more than the wing-back. Paolo Ghiglione was productive in a spot start, but the coach has constantly preferred Lennart Czyborra. Milan Badelj rifled one home two weeks ago but he, like Kevin Strootman, mostly have to take care of the dirty work in the midfield. Marko Pjaca and Gianluca Scamacca have not shined in their recent displays, so Goran Pandev remains in third place in the depth chart up front.
Suggested picks: Destro, Shomurodov, Zajc.
Sampdoria: they too rotate a little too much over the weekend in the Atalanta game, where the rarely used Antonino La Gumina and Valerio Verre got the nod, with poor returns. Mikkel Damsgaard fumbled his opportunity as well, which is unfortunate since he has very high ceiling, but not supreme consistency yet. Balde Keita (five goals), Antonio Candreva (four goals/five assists) and likely Fabio Quagliarella are likely to be back into the starting XI. Jakub Jankto has been underwhelming in the last two months after putting up decent numbers in the early portion of the season and Gaston Ramirez is severely boom-or-bust. Ernesto Torregrossa is nursing an injury, so it is possible Manolo Gabbiadini will be their late-game guy in this one.
Suggested picks: Keita, Candreva, Quagliarella/Damsgaard.
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