Following the away triumph over Palermo, Atalanta need another point to mathematically secure Serie A survival, with Orobici hoping to extend their unbeaten run to seven league games. Meanwhile, Genoa hammered Torino to keep their European hopes alive and they arrive in Bergamo searching for fourth win in five games.
Four players banned
It is fair to say that nobody really expected Atalanta to get involved in the Serie A relegation tussle, but the team, nonetheless, found themselves in a difficult situation ahead of the season finale. Orobici took mere three points from eight league fixtures to slip into the danger zone, but they then managed to turn things around in the nick of time. Atalanta defeated Sassuolo at home before sharing spoils with Roma, Empoli, Cesena and Lazio to all but secure another season in the top flight. Edoardo Reja’s charges then defeated Palermo on the road to create an eight-point advantage over the bottom three, but the win came at a cost as no fewer than three first team regulars picked up suspensions. And with German Denis still banned for punching Lorenzo Tonelli, the hosts will be severely weakened when they face high-flying Genoa, although they are unlikely to be too concerned having virtually secured survival. Even if they lose the remaining three matches, it is not realistic to expect that Cagliari will win their three games.
German Denis, Giuseppe Biava, Vlada Avramov and Davide Zappacosta are all banned, whereas Marcelo Estigarribia and Cristian Raimondi are out injured.
Genoa continue to impress
I cannot remember the last time both clubs from Genoa were vying for European positions and while Sampdoria currently sit one point clear of their local rivals, it is Grifoni that have probably achieved more given the quality of players at Gian Piero Gasperini’s disposal. The experienced coach put together a squad almost entirely consisting of rejects from Europe’s top clubs and he did brilliantly to create a homogeneous unit and a team that have matched even the best Italian sides this season. The likes of Roncaglia, Perotti, Niang and Falque have all managed to kick-start their respective careers at Stadio Luigi Ferarris while helping Genoa mount a serious top 6 challenge. The Rossoblu have been especially impressive of late, winning five of last seven league fixtures and hammering Torino 5-1 last time out. It is perfectly clear that the team are playing with a great deal of confidence at the moment having already exceeded pre-season objectives, and they can be trusted to take advantage of Atalanta’s problems and edge closer to clinching European qualification.
Tino Costa and Sebastian De Maio miss out through suspension, while M’Baye Niang, Diego Perotti, Lorenzo Ariaudo and Giovanni Marchese are out injured.
Atalanta have done pretty well of late, but with four first team regulars missing and the team having already secured survival, Orobici are unlikely to match in-form Genoa side. The Rossoblu have been thoroughly impressive of late and I can see them winning in Bergamo.
Top pick: Genoa Draw no bet 2.00 (1/1) @ Unibet
Alternative pick 1: Both teams to score 1.67 (2/3) @ Betfred
Alternative pick 2: Away win 2.90 (19/10) @ William Hill