Fiorentina vs Torino

February 21, 2015
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Italy’s Europa League participants square off at Artemio Franchi on Sunday, mere three days after their European exploits. And while Viola hope to put extra pressure on top 3 rivals Napoli with a third straight win, Torino hope to remain in contention for another European qualification with a good result in Florence.

Confidence is back

Following two unsuccessful attempts to achieve a top 3 finish in Italian Serie A and qualify for the Champions League, Fiorentina hoped to make things right this time out. But, things did not start well for Vincenzo Montella’s charges as the likes of Rossi and Gomez again missed the start of the season, and Viola needed quite some time to hit the ground running. Having realised the severity of the situation, the club chiefs decided to act and in turn secured signatures of Alberto Gilardino, Alessandro Diamanti and Mohamed Salah, thus seriously improving team’s attacking options. By the time the three players joined the ranks at Artemio Franchi, Fiorentina had already started showing improvement, having not only secured their place in Coppa Italia semis, but also finally revived their top 3 bid in Serie A. Viola have now taken 14 points from last 6 league fixtures to close the gap behind third-placed Napoli to four points and they will be very motivated to extend the impressive run against Torino and put extra pressure on the Azzurri. The midweek game might be a problem for another side, but definitely not for Fiorentina, with Vincenzo Montella expected to continue his rotation policy and keep all his players in good shape.

Alessandro Diamanti and Alberto Gilardino are back in contention, but Marcos Alonso is banned and Borja Valero is a major doubt.

Busy schedule could be a problem

Torino have seriously raised the club’s profile over the last two years, having quickly made the transition from relegation strugglers to Europa League hopefuls. The club did pretty well on their first European appearance after quite a while, getting past the group stage, albeit finishing second behind Club Brugge. Meanwhile, I Granata experienced some problems in attack in their league campaign as they struggled to compensate for the departures of top scorers Immobile and Cerci, but the arrival of Maxi Lopez appears to be the answer to all their problems. The Argentine has already scored three goals for his new side, while setting up few more, and he has established a very good partnership with Fabio Quagliarella. As a result, Torino have been in fine form of late, winning four straight matches before sharing spoils with Cagliari and Athletic Bilbao, but the intense midweek game against los Leones is likely to have a negative effect, especially taking into account that coach Giampiero Ventura doesn’t have the courtesy of resting his star players.

The visitors are missing Cesare Bovo and Omar El Kaddouri through suspension, whilst Alvaro Gonzalez is out injured.


Fiorentina have seriously raised their form of late and the big strength in depth should allow Viola to extend the good run in spite of the busy schedule. Meanwhile, Torino have shown considerable improvement in attack, but they will not be at their best after the difficult midweek game against Athletic Bilbao.

Top pick: Home win   1.83 (5/6) @ William Hill

Alternative pick 1: Over 2.5 goals   2.10 (11/10) @ Paddy Power

Alternative pick 2: Home win + both teams to score   4.25 (13/4) @ Unibet

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