Sampdoria and Sassuolo shorn of strikers so go low


An exotic bet is the best punting play on the Italian Serie A program and it involves backing under two and a half goals in the match between Sampdoria and Sassuolo in Genoa.

Sampdoria boss Sinisa Mihajlovic is being up front about the difficulties that he is facing since Manolo Gabbiadini moved to Napoli before the transfer window slammed shut and it is no coincidence that Sampdoria’s season on several fronts has started to come apart at the seams in recent weeks.

One was itching to lay Sampdoria in its Italian Serie A home game against Sassuolo until one reviewed the fallout of the away team’s 3-1 victory of Internazionale last time out. To say that Sassuolo is going to pay a price for that result is an understatement – Nicola Sansone was sent off and misses his side’s Italian Serie A match at Sampdoria, while Simone Zaza and Domenico Berardi received early and late cautions respectively, yellow cards that have earned them bans. All that means that Sassuolo will line up versus Sampdoria with none of its usual front three, with the absence of Berardi particularly difficult for the Black and Greens to cover.

Thirteen of Sampdoria’s 21 Italian Serie A games have gone under two and a half goals, with its league matches having an average of 2.38 goals. Sampdoria is the lowest Italian Serie A scorer of the teams ranked in the top nine on the ladder and its defence is the division’s fifth tightest.

Sassuolo has featured in some high-scoring Italian Serie A games, including three matches that have gone over four and a half goals. However, Sassuolo’s Italian Serie A matches are still just averaging 2.67 goals, 10 of its 21 league games have gone under two and a half goals and four of them have ended goalless. Sampdoria and Sassuolo played out a 0-0 draw in the Italian Serie A third rounds and guess who was conspicuous by their absence? That is right, Berardi.

Ladbrokes is offering odds of -143  that the Italian Serie A match between Sampdoria and Sassuolo goes under two and a half goals. One thinks that once it becomes common knowledge that Sassuolo’s regular three forwards are all suspended the bet that one is suggesting will become extremely popular.

As far as betting on the raw result of games in the latest Italian Serie A round, the best options are Juventus, which hosts Milan, and Napoli, which entertains Udinese.

Juventus beat Milan 1-0 at the San Siro five months ago and one would struggle to build a case for anything other than the same outcome when two of Italian Serie A’s superpowers clash in Turin. Juventus is unbeaten in its last 38 Italian Serie A home matches, 34 of which it has won and 24 of which it has won to nil. Contrast that with Milan having not won any of its last five Italian Serie A away games and needing last weekend’s 3-1 home victory over bottom-of-the-ladder Parma to post their first league success of the new year.

Napoli left it late to score its winning goal versus Italian Coppa Italia opponent Internazionale on Wednesday but Rafa Benitez’s side got the job done eventually. Napoli has been finding ways to win since losing 1-3 at home to Juventus in Italian Serie A last month and one of its recent victims, albeit after extra time and penalties, was Udinese.

Juventus is available at odds of -278  with many bookmakers, including Bet365, PaddyPower and WilliamHill, to defeat Milan, while BetfredSkyBet and Totesport are listing Napoli at odds of -250  to get over the top of Udinese.

Tips Summary

Sampdoria v Sassuolo Under 2.5 goals
8th February 14:00 GMT
Odds:  -143
Where to Bet: Ladbrokes

Juventus to beat Milan
7th February 19:45 GMT
Odds:  -278
Where to Bet: Bet365, PaddyPowerWilliamHill

Napoli to beat Udinese
8th February 14:00 GMT
Odds:  -250
Where to Bet: BetfredSkyBetTotesport

Domenico Beradi
Nicola Sansone
Serie A
Simone Zaza

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