OUR man in Rome Marco Di Cosmo (@scioltz) returns after the international break with his top Serie A bets.
Lazio v Palermo | Sunday 14:00 | BT Sport Extra
Lazio are in a horrible place at the moment having lost their last three matches including a 2-0 defeat in the Rome derby. Last season the club showed a knack of fighting back from hard times and I expect them to do the same on Sunday. Coach Stefano Pioli will make significant changes to the team, finding players with better motivation to be played in the starting XI.
Keith Balde will be one of these, and he should start ahead of Antonio Candreva, who is performing under his usual standard. But moreover, what is convincing me to back Lazio is the absurd situation going on at the away side.
Palermo’s president has just sacked their coach after a win, and the players are really confused about this. Many of them stated in the press their dislike of what is going on and I can’t imagine this will motivate the side.
As I predicted for Carpi, the change of coach didn’t really work and they ended up taking back their former coach. I think it could happen here in Palermo and I expect the bad times to start here on Sunday. I’ll back Lazio to notch twice or more.
Udinese v Sampdoria | Sunday 14:00 | BT Sport Extra
This is where a new coach could really make a difference. I’ve often bemoaned Sampdoria’s style of play so far this season as they only sit back and rely on a counter approach via their great strikers. Despite sitting pretty in the table the managers were not happy about this and sacked Walter Zenga in favour of Vincenzo Montella.
Before having superb seasons at Fiorentina (where he had three fourth places), Montella had been a glorious striker for Sampdoria and still half of his heart is here. That is why he accepted this offer despite possibly aiming for something more. I think the players will get this, and I reckon he’ll be able to get the very best from his squad. I’ll back them on the Double Chance here.
Bologna v Roma | Saturday 17:00 | BT Sport 2
Roma have the chance to go top in Serie A this afternoon. If the giallorossi win at Bologna they will get the first spot and then have to wait on Napoli, Fiorentina and Inter matching their victory. These three have easy games on the cards, so Roma should win to prevent any dangerous situation.
The giallorossi have a significant number of absentees with Gervinho, Mohammed Salah and Francesco Totti out, but the power of Eden Dzeko should make up for this absent trio alongside Juan Manuel Iturbe and the much talented Iago Calque.
Bologna come into this game on the back of two significant wins but this test should be too stiff for them. Roma have already won at Firenze this season, having significantly improved their away form.
Lazi0 v Palermo – Lazio to score Over 1.5 Goals (5/8 888 Sport)
Udinese v Sampdoria – Sampdoria Double Chance (3/4 Betway)
Bologna v Roma – Roma to win (5/6 Sportingbet)
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