Serie A Sunday match programme starts with this season’s final edition of the Derby della Capitale. AS Roma welcome their city rivals Lazio looking to preserve the gap in front of Napoli and make sure to enter the closing stages of the season safely in second spot which guarantees direct Champions League promotion.
Champions League the main objective for Giallorossi
Five rounds from the end of the Serie A season AS Roma have very little chance of upsetting the reigning champions Juventus. Giallorossi can still be satisfied with their current campaign which has brought visible improvements under Luciano Spalletti. Last season’s 80-point tally which earned AS Roma the third-place finish in Serie A is likely to be surpassed and Giallorossi stand good chance of finishing second in standings which will guarantee direct Champions league promotion. Exciting times are ahead of AS Roma and the fans are already looking forward to summer which is likely to see plenty of action. Serie A giants have hired famous Monchi as new sporting director and there is no doubt that his arrival will help Giallorossi raise their profile in the transfer market with former Sevilla talisman who is held directly responsible for all the success the Spanish club has achieved during past couple of years with his shrewd business dealings. Buoyed by the arrival of Monchi, AS Roma will be keen to record a good result from the forthcoming Derby della Capitale. Roma are on a fine run of late, winning seven of their eight matches in all competitions.
Nominal hosts will have no major selection issues as Alessandro Florenzi remains the only name on the injury list. Influential midfielder Daniele De Rossi returns to the fold.
Biancocelesti head into the Sunday’s Derby della Capitale with a great desire to keep hold of the Europa League place they are currently occupying. Lazio are fourth in table with only one point in front of Atalanta with five games to go. Simone Inzaghi’s men have had a rather successful season during which Biancocelesti managed to display glimpses of great promise and exciting quality, so they will find it rather disappointing to miss out on the Champions League football for the ninth season running. On the bright side of things, Lazio can be satisfied with the talent they have on their hands and Simone Inzaghi is keen to see what future holds for his highly-exciting squad. A unique blend of experience and youth, Lazio have done well to utilise Italy’s forgotten man Ciro Immobile to the maximum. The former Torino, Sevilla and Borussia Dortmund man made a stunning return to form with 20 Serie A goals in 32 appearances for Biancocelesti and will be the biggest threat to AS Roma on Sunday. Lazio have lost three of the last four Derby della Capitale matches and the Sunday’s clash brings chance for Biancocelesti to restore some of the balance and further complicate things at the top of the table.
Federico Marchetti is ruled out through a knee injury, whereas Alessandro Murgia is suffering from an illness and could be unavailable for selection. On the bright side, Stefan Radu should be fit to feature following his calf problem.
Matches between Rome’s city rivals tend to be openly-contested affairs and matches that are never played simply for the sake of points. Prestige, bragging rights and honour are at stake here as well and we expect both teams to head hard for a win.
Top pick: Both teams to score – Yes 1.5 (1/2) @William Hill
Alternative pick 1: Under 3.5 goals 1.71 (5/7) @888sport
Alternative pick 2: AS Roma 1.85 (17/20) @Bet365