Atalanta vs Napoli by JerryDrake

Atalanta
VS
Napoli
Bergamo is a traditionally a difficult pitch for the Azzurri as you can see in the H2H statistics below. In the last two meetings there have been a draw, 1-1 in 2011 and a home win, 1-0 in 2012. Bergamo belongs to the cities in Northern Italy where Napoli usually receive a bad hospitality together with Milan, Turin, Verona, Brescia, Udine and Vicenza.

 

H2H meetings in Bergamo in Serie A, Serie B and Coppa Italia: 19-20-8, 65/46

 

For this Sunday fixture coach Benitez will have all players available except Mesto, Behrami, Zuniga and the new signed Brazilian defender Henrique. His colleague, Atalanta coach Colantuono will miss suspended players Brivio and Carmona and injured players Cigarini, Scaloni and Bellini.

 

Before having a deeper look at the teams, I want to give a general view on the table, form and motivations.

 

Napoli are 3rd in the league and they must defend themselves from Fiorentina for the CL qualification. They have the 3rd best attack in Italy after Juventus and Roma but they conceded too many goals compared to their rivals and this is the reason why Napoli decided to sign Ghoulam and Henrique. Only Ghoulam has been called up as Henrique is not fit yet.

 

After this fixture Napoli will play the first leg of the Coppa Italia semifinals in Rome against Roma, and I imagine that they will try not to spend too many energies for this Serie A fixture.

 

Atalanta are placed 12th in the league with 24 points, 7 more than relegation. They have lost only two home games out of 10 against Fiorentina and Juventus whereas they were very close to defeat Roma when they were leading 1-0 with a goal scored by Brivio. Strootman scored the equalizer in the last minute of the game.

 

In their last match they have lost in Turin against the Granata coached by Ventura. The penalty awarded to Torino was not correct and this caused long protests from the Nerazzurri. This shows that they keep fighting for every possible point even if they have a good advantage over the relegation zone.

 

Napoli succeed in making their game when they face open teams while they struggle against defensive ones like we saw in their home games with Chievo and Lazio recently. And Atalanta belong to the tough ones in Italy, above all when they play in their own stadium.

 

At the home side two men will be more motivated as the others. One of them is Pierpaolo Marino, a general manager who worked many years for Napoli. He was the one who decided to sign Hamsik and Lavezzi. The second one is Argentinian striker Germán Gustavo Denis, called “El Tanque”. He played three seasons with Napoli and moved to Atalanta in 2011. Since then, he played 88 games with the Nerazzurri and scored 38 goals.

 

Goalkeeper Consigli is one of the best goalkeepers in Italy and he can count on experienced defenders at his side like Stendardo and Lucchini. In the midfield Giacomo Bonaventura is one of those who can make the difference in every game, above all when he plays against top teams. He scored only two goals this year but I remember he hit often the post in some games and created a lot of chances and assists to his team mates. Although many teams looked for him in the past months, he still plays for Atalanta and I consider it a positive thing for this team.

 

On the Napoli side we have all seen what a great season are having Belgian player Mertens and Spanish player Callejón as well as Argentinian striker Higuain. Still, I saw them having a short break, they spent a lot of energies in the first part of the season and they all look a little tired now, except Higuain.

 

Jorginho has started well his new experience in Naples but he is still not completely integrated in the strategies designed by Benitez. Maggio is the ghost of the fast running player we saw in the past seasons and he is not supporting the defense the way he should. The only one giving solidity to the defense is Albiol. Goalkeeper Reina is bpin
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Comments (19)
chelsea
I like the way to take Sassuolo - Verona over 2.5

What do you think?

And I'm sure in Catania home win
02/01/2014 - 17:28
JerryDrake
Later I will write about those games. Squinzi (President of Sassuolo) sacked Di Francesco because he wants more solidity in the defense. So, I must see which players will pick Malesani. Catania are in a must-win-situation but Livorno have started a new season with the arrival of trainer Di Carlo. Later I will study the line-ups and infos.
02/01/2014 - 17:41
chelsea
yea, I have read about new coach at Sassuolo, look through probable line-ups on whoscored.com there are a lot absents for hosts
02/01/2014 - 17:49
chelsea
Today was G8 day in EPL so far X2 for Sun land and AH(0) for West Ham

Now I'm analysing another matches, I like the way Arsenal - Palace Under 3
02/01/2014 - 17:51
JerryDrake
Sassuolo signed many new players: Mendes, Manfredini, Ariaudo, Brighi, Rosi, Biondini, Floccari, Cannavaro.
02/01/2014 - 18:17
JerryDrake
Nice website whoscored. I suggest you to follow also the teams pages at Gazzetta, example: http://www.gazzetta.it/Calcio/Squadre/Sassuolo/

On the right you see the probable line-up, bench, infortunati (= injured), squalificati (=suspended), altri (= others, meaning "not called up").

Sassuolo signed also Sanabria from Barcelona!
02/01/2014 - 18:19
chelsea
Thank you, I'll look through that website

Floccari and Manfredini... I remember them in Genoa, so thank you very much I decided don't bet on this match.

Look through the match in Bubdes liga between Herta and Nurnderg
Guests are missing two regular CB Emanuel Pogatetz (16/0)and Per Nilsson (16/3)and CDM's Niklas Stark (12/0)and Makoto Hasebe (13/0)

in the other hand hosts are missing CB John Anthony Brooks (8/1) and CDM Tolga Cigerci (11/1)

Nurnderg have conceeded at least 3 goals on last 3 away games, so with such importand missings in defence I expect another conceeded goals,
02/01/2014 - 19:16
chelsea
Squalificati:Coda (15/0)Greco (19/3)
Diffidati:Emeghara (18/1) Luci (19/1) Mbaye (17/0_
Altri:D e L u c i a

according to ur website Livorno are missing 5 important players, Catania must win!
02/01/2014 - 19:22
JerryDrake
TY but I focus on one thing at the time. Later I will follow Torino and later I will write some ideas for tomorrow. When is Nurnberg?
02/01/2014 - 20:04
JerryDrake
"Diffidati" means that they miss the next game, as soon as they get another yellow card. Only Greco missing, he is good. I also back Catania as you can read in the preview.
02/01/2014 - 23:54
chelsea
Thanks!

Nurnberg will play today

My bets are:

Arsenal - Palace Under 3
WBA - Livpool Over 3
Catania win
Galatasaray AH(-1)
Nuremberg over 2.5

I'm also thinking about
Bayern - Frankfurt Under 3.5
Atalanta - Napoli away win
02/02/2014 - 07:59
chelsea
Napoli have drawn last 2 matches,so they must win, take into consideration that Fio lost yesterday, if Napoli win gap between 3 and 4 place will increase
Atalanta are 7 points above the relegation zone, so that's not must win match
Also there are a lot missing in home side..
02/02/2014 - 08:05
JerryDrake
I also used to think so: 'one team did this, the other must do this'. Dont trust the falling odds: Napoli are not to trust in Bergamo. I will also bet a combo for fun. I write it later.
02/02/2014 - 12:29
JerryDrake
So, here is my combo. As I dont like to mix up leagues, I chose this, if I lose is only my fault and I can sleep well in the night:

Atalanta - Napoli 1
Catania - Livorno 1
Chievo - Lazio X
Sassuolo - Verona 1
Roma - Parma U2.5
Juventus - Inter O2.5

Odds 200.00
02/02/2014 - 13:12
chelsea
quite risky, but anyway good luck!

Catania - Livorno 1
Galatas - Bursa -1
Arsenal - Palace Under 3
WBA - Liv'pool Over 3
Hertha - Nurnberg Over 2.5

Odds 24.83

02/02/2014 - 13:29
JerryDrake
Surprise, surprise. Higuain not in the line-up!
Benitez, I can read your mind! :)
02/02/2014 - 15:24
JerryDrake
Also Hamsik in the bench. Dzemaili takes his place in the starting 11.
02/02/2014 - 15:46
JerryDrake
Also Jorginho in the bench.

So: Jorginho, Higuain and Hamsik on the bench. At their places the good young striker Zapata (still, HIguain would be much more dangerous for my bet), Pandev (not very dangerous recently) and Dzemaili (he has done well last year but has not much space this season).

With these decisions Benitez is indirectly giving priority to the Coppa Italia semifinal.
02/02/2014 - 15:51
smirn0ff
Atalanta smashed Napoli :)
02/02/2014 - 17:39
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