Serie A Injury and Suspension Report – Round 25


Juventus: Sami Khedira underwent a heart ablation with an arrhythmogenic atrial focus and will miss a minimum of one month. Emre Can is suspended. Douglas Costa remains questionable with the quad injury that has forced to skip the last few games.

Napoli: Lorenzo Insigne is disqualified, while Mario Rui has slim chances to return from a thigh pull.

Inter: Mauro Icardi took some tests this week, which revealed no structural damage on his achy knee, but he is still poised to be unavailable this week amid the standoff with the managament. Balde Keita is having a hard time shaking off a thigh strain. Continue reading

Serie A Injury and Suspension Report – Round 23


Juventus: Federico Bernardeschi will be good to go after leaving the last game with a chest injury. On the other hand, Douglas Costa is iffy due to a bruised quad and Leonardo Spinazzola has a sore ankle. Giorgio Chiellini (calf) will be out again, while Leonardo Bonucci (ankle) is making a late push to be in the squad list.

Napoli: Amin Younes is having troubles with the surgically repaired Achilles tendon. Raul Albiol is reportedly dealing with a patellar tendon issue that could turn out to be a very serious one.

Inter: Matteo Politano will serve the final game of his suspension. Balde Keita has been called up despite the coach saying that he is not ready. Borja Valero is out with knee soreness.

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Serie A Injury and Suspension Report – Round 22


Juventus: Giorgio Chiellini suffered a calf pull that should force him to miss a couple of games. Miralem Pjanic and Sami Khedira returned in Coppa Italia, while Mario Mandzukic (ankle) is expected to be available this week. Emre Can is ill but available.

Napoli: Fabian Ruiz is suspended. Raul Albiol and Elseid Hysaj are fatigued, while Adam Younes is banged up: the first two have called up, the winger has not.

Inter: Matteo Politano was slapped with a two-game ban. Stefan De Vrij is dealing with some muscle fatigue, but he has been called up, while Balde Keita remains out.  Continue reading

Can Minnows SPAL Shock Fiorentina?

With just five games in the books, this clash is between two teams sitting surprisingly high up the table as fourth placed Fiorentina welcome SPAL to the Stadio Artemio Franchi on Saturday, the visitors sitting second behind Juventus at this early stage.

They are there on merit however, notching wins over Parma and Atalanta as Coach Leonardo Semplici – a former youth team boss at Fiorentina – continues to shine. His players clearly believe in what they are doing, his well-drilled three-man defence working brilliantly to deny opponents time and space.

That they have conceded just one goal so far this term underlines the effort they have consistently displayed, while they have been dangerous on the counter attack and at set pieces where Semplici’s planning and attention to detail once again comes to the fore. The 51-year-old will have to cope without midfield playmaker Federico Viviani however, meaning Pasquale Schiattarella will likely be given a start in his absence.

Fiorentina have been equally good so far this term however, bouncing back from last weekend’s loss at Napoli with an excellent first half display away to Sampdoria in midweek. They eventually held on for a 1-1 draw, but with first choice goalkeeper Alban Lafont set to return to the side after a two-game absence, the Viola backline should be much stronger this time around.

“Those who were substituted are better but I will decide tomorrow,” Stefano Pioli revealed during his pre-match press conference. “Everything is fine, nobody has had any problems. I could make some changes but I’m yet to confirm the team. [Bartolomej] Dragowski has excellent skills, he has been ready and this leaves me satisfied.However, tomorrow Lafont will play because he’s fine.”

There will be some difficult choices for Stefano Pioli to make in midfield where Gerson – on loan from AS Roma – has been particularly disappointing and he is expected to be dropped in favour of Bryan Dabo for this encounter. Further forward, it remains to be seen whether Marko Pjaca will retain his place on the wing as former Everton man Kevin Mirallas awaits his first start and the Fiorentina boss will also need to hand Giovanni Simeone a rest at some stage with Cyril Théréau looking for a run out.

The same is true for Federico Chiesa, but there are plenty of options for Pioli should he choose this game as the one where he can afford to rotate the side somewhat. One player in excellent form to look out for is right-back Nikola Milenkovic, while on the opposite flank Cristiano Biraghi’s crossing has been a constant source of goal scoring opportunities.

Fiorentina (4-3-3): Lafont; Milenkovic, Pezzella, Vitor Hugo, Biraghi; Dabo, Veretout, Benassi; Chiesa, Simeone, Pjaca

SPAL (3-5-2): Gomis; Cionek, Vicari, Felipe; Lazzarri, Kurtic, Schiattarella, Missiroli, Fares; Petagna, Antenucci

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Serie A Player Status Updates – Round 36


Injuries pile up at the end of the season and unfortunately some top players got caught.

Juventus: Miralem Pjanic is suspended, while Mario Mandzukic will be held out due to a cut on the ankle. Giorgio Chiellini, Stefano Sturaro and Mattia De Sciglio are out with their previous injuries. Benedikt Howedes suffered yet another muscular ailment. 

Napoli: Kalidou Koulibaly is disqualified and Faouzi Ghoulam continues to rehab his fractured patella.  Continue reading

Serie A Player Status Updates – Round 34


Some of the most recognizable players risks being out in the upcoming round, here are the updates on everybody’s conditions.

Juventus: Miralem Pjanic is trying to recover for the big match against Napoli after skipping one due to a hamstring contracture and there are good chances he will be able to. Same for Mario Mandzukic, who was unavailable in Crotone due to gastroenteritis. Stefano Sturaro has a sore Achilles tendon, Mattia De Sciglio is out with a foot injury.

Napoli: no problems for the Partenopei, other than Faouzi Ghoulam who has been out for a while with a patella fracture.  Continue reading

Serie A Player Status Updates – Round 32


Here are the latest updates on few players’ conditions heading into the next Serie A matchday.

Juventus:  Mattia De Sciglio was taken out of the Real Madrid match due to an apparent plantar fascia lesion that will require further testing. Federico Bernardeschi and Andrea Barzagli are working their way back from a knee sprain and an abdominal strain and practiced partially this week, but they will likely not be available this week.

Napoli: Mario Rui is suspended, no other absentees other than the usual one, Faouzi Ghoulam.

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Serie A Player Status Updates – Round 27

<> at Appiano Gentile on February 27, 2018 in Como, Italy.

Once again some key players risk missing the next Serie A round due to injuries. Here are the latest news: you can find the updates compared to the original version in italic.

Napoli:  Marek Hamsik was under the weather late in the week, but he will try to shake it off by Saturday night. Elseid Hysaj was subbed off on Monday, but it was only precautionary. Vlad Chiriches is out with a hamstring strain, Faouzi Ghoulam with a fractured fibula. Arek Milik should make the squad list this time.

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Best Serie A Game of the Week – Round 17


Several games in the last round were either low-scoring or one-sided, so there are only a couple of candidates for Serie A game of the week: while Atalanta-Lazio was certainly the most entertaining one, Benevento-Spal had bigger implications. Continue reading