Napoli: they did not get to play the third game because of well-known reasons, but the first two were pretty indicative. Victor Osimhen has yet to score, but he has had a major impact anyway and he is bound to break through soon. In the meantime, Dries Mertens has led the charge (two goals, two assists), helped by the resurgent Hirving Lozano, who has kept up the momentum from the restart. The injury to Lorenzo Insigne and Piotr Zielinski and Elijf Elmas getting COVID might slow down the deployment 4-2-3-1 in full force, but that should be the way forward and the arrival of Tiemoué Bakayokocements it. The absences could give Matteo Politano and/or Stanislav Lobotka a bigger role than usual and the former scored in the Genoa romp. If Atalanta do not adjust the way they defend, they could make some sweet music on counters.
Atalanta: Pierluigi Gollini (PCL tear), Aleksey Miranchuk (thigh strain) and Matteo Pessina (patellar dislocation) will once again be unavailable and the coach raised some concern regarding Cristiano Piccini, who has not been able to practice fully since joining. The fact that they are signing another player in his role does not bode well for his timetable. The team announced that somebody tested positive but did not disclose whom: Mattia Caldara and Rafael Toloi are absent out of the blue.
Benevento: Federico Barba returned midweek but subbed off in the first half and has been ruled out. Andres Tello (thigh) and Oliver Kragl (neck) are again sidelined. Nicolas Viola (meniscus) might not be back for the first game after the break. Continue reading →
Milan continued their winning streak earlier this evening by beating Crotone away from home, scoring two goals just like in the league opener. Once again, the performance wasn’t spectacular from the Rossoneri but they did the necessary, keeping a clean sheet as well which is important for the defence.
Franck Kessie gave Milan the lead in stoppage time of the first half, safely converting a penalty after Ante Rebic was brought down in the box. The Rossoneri also had a few chances prior to that, including a Simon Kjaer header that struck the bar after Hakan Calhanoglu picked him out from the corner flag. Continue reading →
Milan have started the season well with three wins out of three, albeit facing a few smaller teams in the Europa League qualifiers. Those games are known to be tricky, though, and the Rossoneri have certainly managed to build on their impressive form from last season despite several key absences.
Alessio Romagnoli is still recovering from his injury, Ante Rebic has been suspended in the Europa League and Zlatan Ibrahimovic is currently in isolation due to COVID. These are just a few of the blows that Stefano Pioli has had to deal with, highlighting that there is still some work to be done on the transfer market. Continue reading →
Sampdoria: the Blucerchiati tried to stay close in the Juventus clash but, despite a moderate surge at the beginning of the season half, they were not threatening. The coach kept initially Fabio Quagliarella and Gaston Ramirez on the bench and that was costly. The Uruguayan had some good plays upon subbing in and he is generally the stick that stirs the pot for them, as they do not have much creativity throughout the roster. Federico Bonazzoli struggled as main reference point, Fabio Depaoli, Mehdi Leris and Jakub Jankto did not much of note. However, in an easier match-up, Jankto and Morten Thorsby could be more proactive. Continue reading →
Bologna: Gary Medel is suspended and is also recovering from a grade one strain in the semimembranosus muscle on the right thigh, therefore he could miss week two as well.
Cagliari: Luca Ceppitelli, Filip Bradaric and Kiril Despodov are quarantining after catching COVID-19 in late August. Gaston Pereiro suffered a fifth metatarsal fracture in the right foot about two weeks ago and he has a 45-day timetable. Alessandro Deiola is recovering from a clean-up surgery on the right knee he had during his time at Lecce. Continue reading →
Fiorentina: despite not changing all that much, the Viola have brought in some new interesting pieces during the transfer market window, such as Sofyan Amrabat, who is suspended in this one, Giacomo Bonaventura and Cristiano Biraghi, who seems poised to stay after a solid season at Inter. However, their coach and attack are the same, which means we can expect something akin to what happened in the restart, where Franck Ribery and Gaetano Castrovilli served as the main playmakers, Federico Chiesawas the most consistent scorer, while Christian Kouame, Dusan Vlahovic and Patrick Cutrone, all capable but otherworldly strikers, fight for one spot. The ex-Genoa forward seems to have separated himself from the pack a little during the summer. Bonaventura is supremely sneaky.
Chievo Verona were deferred again with the accusation of making false profits in several trades with Cesena as the prosecutor hopes to have solved the defect of form that prevented the case from going to trial a couple of weeks ago. Continue reading →
While the overall quality of this year’s relegated Serie A sides was relatively low, there are a number of individuals who undoubtedly have the quality to play next season in Italy’s top flight. With Parma and Empoli having already punched their Continue reading →
The final round was a fitting end to a very entertaining season.
Standings implications. Inter won the battle of Olimpico and qualified to Champions League over Lazio thanks to the head-to-head record. Milan battered Fiorentina and held onto the sixth-spot, so Atalanta will have to go through the lengthy Europa League playoffs this summer. Crotone are the third relegated team after Benevento and Hellas Verona: SPAL, Cagliari, Chievo and Udinese all ended up winning, so they would not have avoided the drop even if they had prevailed against Napoli. Continue reading →