Milan: the return of Zlatan Ibrahimovic contributed to opening up the offense against Fiorentina and few players benefitted. The Swedish star found the target and he now has as many goals as appearances (15), while Hakan Calhanoglu busted out of a lengthy injury-caused scoring drought for his second goal of the year (plus nine assists). Brahim Diaz also hit the net, but Ante Rebic won the appeal against his suspension and Rafael Leao is likely to be available for this one as well. Moreover, the Spaniard got a little banged up during the break. Franck Kessie (9 goals) has not scored in three matches, but he picked up an assist in the most recent one. Theo Hernandez (4 goals, 4 assists) has not been very productive over the last couple of months and last scored in late December. Alexis Saelemaekers (2/2) has emerged as a decent complimentary piece.
Suggested picks: Ibrahimovic, Calhanoglu, Kessie.
Sampdoria: a goal by Antonio Candreva was enough to solve the Torino game. The winger had not made the stat-sheet since mid-January, but had stayed atop of their depth chart with few assists and his significant usage. He is now up to five goals and five helpers in the campaign. Fabio Quagliarella has been their top striker lately registering a goal and an assist in the last three fixtures, while Balde Keita has not produced over his last five appearances, also losing some playing time to Manolo Gabbiadini and Mikkel Damsgaard. The former recently opened his scoring tally, while the Dane has notched two goals and four assists but has not done damage in some time. It remains a hard to trust the playing time of their attackers. Jakub Jankto (4/3) has reprised a consistent role on the flank and he back on the radar as a secondary option.
Suggested picks: Candreva, Quagliarella, Keita/Gabbiadini.
Atalanta: Duvan Zapata and Ruslan Malinovskyi came through in the Verona game. The Colombian forward has picked up points in all but one of the last five matches, scoring twice and furnishing three assists. The Ukrainian midfielder has taken some playing time away from Josip Ilicic and has been moderately effective, finding the target in two of the last five fixtures. Their front-line breathes fire no matter who is getting the nod. Luis Muriel has recorded five goals and four helpers over the last two months and also Ilicic has stayed afloat (two goals, two assists) has stayed afloat in such stretch. Star wingback Robin Gosens (9/5) will likely be back in the XI. Mario Pasalic has more upside than Matteo Pessina, but the two will probably divvy up the minutes rather than feature together since so many attackers are in good shape.
Suggested picks: Muriel, Zapata, Malinovskyi/Ilicic.
Udinese: they were a little unlucky to be held scoreless against Lazio as they had a decent offensive effort. Rodrigo De Paul (6/5) saw his streak of consecutive matches with some bonuses come to an end, but not for lack of trying as he hit the post. Roberto Pereira struck gold three games ago but he has been silent in the past two, but he is a massive piece in their design and still worth deploying, even though he is never going to be as consistent as his compatriot. Fernando Llorente has been unable to follow up the goal he bagged in that same game, so their production out of the center-forward spot remains somewhat wanting, which leaves an opening for Stefano Okaka and Ilija Nestorovski. Neither striker is particularly palatable until they find some continuity. Nahuel Molina has achieved that on the right flank and he has posted three assists already. Jean-Victor Makengo is seeing more minutes in the midfield but, despite being more energetic than Tolgay Arslan and Walace, it does not look like he is going to be a major fantasy asset.
Suggested picks: De Paul, Pereyra, Llorente.
Sassuolo: Domenico Berardi bagged a brace the last time they played, versus Torino, but then they suffered a comeback. More importantly, Berardi and Francesco Caputo, who have both tallied 11 goals thus far, have picked up small injuries during the break and those are two massive blows to their offense. However two of their other attackers found the target recently, Filip Djuricic and Hamed Traore, ending considerable dry spells. Gregoire Defrel is hurt as well, so it will be Giacomo Raspadori guiding the front-line: he has not had much success so far in League play, but he was convincing with Italy U-21. Jeremie Boga might be in better shape coming off the pause, but it is starting to look like a lost season for him.
Suggested picks: Djuricic, Traore, Raspadori.
Roma: the Giallorossi are coming off two disappointing result as well as they did not put up much offense and failed to score against Napoli and Parma. They too are dealing with some injury doubts but it does not look like they will get the boost they were hoping for. Their attack has surely struggled while they were on the mend as Edin Dzeko and Borja Mayoral have not found the target in eight matches and Pedro (4/1) and Stephan El Shaarawy have not stepped up in Serie A play. The only ones staying afloat performance-wise have been Lorenzo Pellegrini (6/4) and the wing-backs Leonardo Spinazzola (2/4) and Rick Karsdorp (1/5), who inevitably can not have the same pull of as a forward though.
Suggested picks: Pellegrini, Spinazzola, Pedro.
Torino: after a potential breakout display versus Sassuolo, where Simone Zaza spearheaded the rally with a brace, they had a dud against Sampdoria as they failed to take a single shot on goal. Andrea Belotti has not made the stat-sheet in League play in some time but looked better post-COVID with the national team and should quickly resume producing. He has been pretty good prior to the illness, notching 11 goals and five assists. Antonio Sanabria has found paydirt twice in four matches, so they have three potential forwards that can make some noise, while Simone Verdi and Federico Bonazzoli have not picked up bonuses in a while despite some okay showing off the bench. Rolando Mandragora has become a not-so-sneaky factor in their offense, finding the target twice and providing one helper since joining in January. Cristian Ansaldi has logged three assists over the four games.
Suggested picks: Belotti, Sanabria, Mandragora.
Juventus: despite a very aggressive lineup, they laid a massive egg against Benevento, as they did not attack with much lucidity and squandered their chances. Cristiano Ronaldo misfired after putting together a hat-trick against Cagliari and leads the League in scoring with his 23 goals. Federico Chiesa has been the most productive sidekick as, prior to the last game, he had taken home points in five straight thanks to one goal and three assists: he has totaled seven and seven in the campaign. Alvaro Morata (7/8) has instead been more hit-and-miss as he had a couple of stellar displays, one with a brace, but also four zeros in the last two months. Dejan Kulusevski has not broken through despite the significant playing time, even though he has looked increasingly involved in the offense. Juan Cuadrado is back from suspension and he has recorded an assist three assists in his last six appearances and six in the year.
Suggested picks: Ronaldo, Chiesa, Morata.
Bologna: they pulled off a three-goal comeback versus Crotone but mostly powered by goals of three relatively new contributors rather than their usual scorers. The most relevant one was Andreas Skov Olsen, who has been getting some run over Riccardo Orsolini but had not done damage in few months. His stocks are surely on the rise. Musa Barrow (6 goals, 7 helpers) and Rodrigo Palacio both dished an assist: it was the second in a row for both and the Gambian attacker, who had had hit bullseye in the previous game. Palacio is out this week, which will allow Nicola Sansone (2/2) to return to the XI and he tends to fare well whenever he is called upon. Roberto Soriano (9/5) did not make the stat-sheet but furnished another dazzling outing as he played a role in all the main actions: he has found the target in half of the past six tilts. Mattias Svanberg (3/2) has clearly emerged as their most appealing option among their pivots.
Suggested picks: Soriano, Barrow, Sansone.
Inter: the COVID outbreak did not affect their top weapons. In their last match against Torino, it was nothing new for the Nerazzurri, who have achieved tremendous efficacy up front riding Romelu Lukaku and Lautaro Martinez. The Belgian has found the target 19 times in the season, El Toro 14, plus they have tallied eight and five assists respectively. The strikers have pretty much vacuumed up all the scoring considering also Alexis Sanchez’s output as he has logged four goals and one assist over the past four contests. El Nino Maravilla has been able to produce also off the bench. Achraf Hakimi, Marcelo Brozovic and Nicolò Barella all had their moments throughout the season, but they are going through rather muted stretches as the forwards have completely taken over. Ivan Perisic is out with a small injury and Ashley Young does not have the same kind of upside.
Suggested picks: Lukaku, Martinez, Sanchez.
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