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07 May 2023 / admin

Soccer Italy Serie A Prediction

Empoli vs Salernitana - Match Preview

⚽ 8 May 2023 - 16:30 GMT +0

Empoli were the beneficiaries of a bizarre goal inside the first minute which set them up for a 3-1 win over Bologna on Thursday, a victory that gave them an eight-point cushion over the Serie A (SA) relegation zone ahead of this round. Coach Paolo Zanetti was impressed with his squad’s ability to overcome the negativity of their dire form of late (W1, D1, L7), a run that included three consecutive defeats prior to their victory on Thursday.

Zanetti also said his side has “an obligation to play a great game” as they get ready to play Salernitana, who they are level on points with, as they look to ensure mathematical safety from the drop. Playing at the Carlo Castellani Stadium gives them a fair chance to take a big step towards that, having lost only three times across ten SA home games (W5, D2), two of which were against current top-four sides.

Salernitana prepared for this trip with a thrilling 3-3 draw against Fiorentina that saw Boulaye Dia score a hat-trick, with that triple making him the club’s top scorer in a single top-flight season with 15 goals. The Granata are now unbeaten in ten matches (W2, D8), with only Manchester City enjoying a better such streak in Europe's top-five leagues. Little wonder then that manager Paulo Sousa’s contract extension is a talking point at the club, although the main focus remains securing their SA safety.

Salernitana has been a stubborn side on their travels, notching up five consecutive away league draws which include fixtures against AC Milan and Napoli. They have come a long way since losing 8-2 at Atalanta in January in what was the club’s joint-heaviest top-flight defeat, never conceding more than a goal across the next seven road trips.

📋 Players to watch: Răzvan Marin assisted twice in the last game, making him the first Empoli player to do so in the top-flight since May 2019. Meanwhile, a goal from Lassana Coulibaly could be good news for Salernitana, with his last two strikes ending in 3-0 league wins.

Hot stat: Nearly a third of Empoli’s SA goals this season have been conceded beyond the 80th minute.

Udinese vs Sampdoria - Match Preview

⚽ 8 May 2023 - 16:30 GMT +0

Udinese did their best, but ultimately failed to prevent Napoli from claiming the Serie A (SA) title on Thursday night, although the 1-1 draw boosted their hopes of finishing in the top half of the table for the first time since 2012/13. They took an early lead but couldn’t finish off the job, meaning they’ve won just one of their last six games (D2, L3) and need just five more points to better last term’s haul of 47.

Zebretti’s last four home league games have seen them beat last year’s champions AC Milan 3-1 and hold this year’s title winners Napoli as part of a longer sequence of seven matches unbeaten on their own turf (W2, D5) so they’ll be full of confidence at the Dacia Arena. With none of the last five home H2Hs against Sampdoria ending level (W3, L2), they’ll fancy their chances of claiming three points here against their struggling opponents.

The end of Sampdoria’s time in the Italian top-flight is nigh as after Wednesday’s 2-0 defeat to Torino, they start the round ten points behind the 17th-placed side badly needing a victory here to keep their wafer-thin survival chances alive. Having won just one of their last 17 league fixtures (D5, L11), they will finish the season with their lowest points total in the three-points-per-win era.

La Samp might struggle to pick up many more on the road given they haven’t won a league away game since early January (D2, L6) and have conceded an average of 3.25 goals per game across their last four such fixtures (D1, L3). A tough finish to a miserable season awaits as after this, they also travel to face AC Milan and Napoli!

📋 Players to watch: Sandi Lovrić opened the scoring between the tenth and 20th minute in two of Udinese’s last three home SA fixtures, while all three of Jesé’s league goals this term arrived after the 60th minute – one for Sampdoria and two for the Turkish side Ankaragücü.

Hot stat: Udinese have scored an average of exactly one first-half goal per game in home SA matches this term.

Sassuolo vs Bologna - Match Preview

⚽ 8 May 2023 - 18:45 GMT +0

Mid-table Sassuolo has been alternating between wins and losses across their last five Serie A (SA) matches (W2, L3), but there was some comfort for them in that they did mathematically secure safety in midweek despite a 2-0 defeat against Lazio. Now they have a chance to secure a third top-half finish from the last four seasons; however, it remains to be seen how much of a motivator that will be for Alessio Dionis i's men.

Home form has been solid for Sassuolo despite their inconsistent run, and their last-gasp come-from-behind 2-1 win in their last match here against Empoli saw them extend their unbeaten streak at Mapei Stadium to five matches (W4, D1). However, one win from their last seven home meetings with Bologna suggests that record could be put to the test here.

Two disallowed goals because of handballs in the opening 30 minutes had a crucial detrimental impact for Bologna, who lost to Sassuolo’s last home opponents, Empoli, in the previous round (3-1). Two recent draws with giants AC Milan and Juventus - albeit at home - show Thiago Motta’s men can be a match for any side on their day, yet even a positive result here is unlikely to reignite their European hopes as the visitors start the round 13-points adrift of the top six.

Bologna have now lost back-to-back away league matches for the first time since October and their travelling fans could be fearing the worst again here. That’s because those defeats contributed to Bologna’s record of just one win in five away games against sides starting the 13th round (Sassuolo’s position) or below (D2, L2). There should be plenty of entertainment for the Neutrals at least, with five of their last seven away outings producing 3+ match goals.

📋 Players to watch: Sassuolo talisman Domenico Berardi has notched four goals in the last six meetings with Bologna (G3, A1), albeit all came away from home. Hoping for another successful trip to Mapei Stadium is Bologna’s Riccardo Orsolini, who scored in two of the last three H2Hs here.

Hot stat: Seven of the last nine H2Hs have seen at least two goals scored after the break.

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