My first match pick today after a break for the international games is between Roma (5th) and Napoli (2nd).
With 10 matches to the end of season, the difference between Napoli (60pts) and 1st place Juventus is 18pts, and the difference from 3rd place Inter is 7pts. With the form that Juventus is currently in, it is safe to say title race is over for the visitors, and they can comfortably coast to remain in second place.
The host today remain outside of the Champions league spot with 47pts and 4 pts behind 4th place AC Milan. Host will be looking to avoid losing out on all points in this encounter, and will be fighting hard against the superior abilities of the less motivated Napoli team.
Roma have had a run of eight Serie A (SA) matches where both teams have scored, with seven of them being over 2.5 match goals.
However, five of Napoli’s last six SA away games ended under 2.5 match goals, with exception of a 4-0 win at Parma (11th). 5 of Napoli's recent 6 SA away games have seen at least one team fail to score.
My assessment is to go for a conservative low scoring encounter, that is robbed of much of its explosive temperament by mutual respect both teams have for each others attacking abilities as both of them are joint 3rd place on the scoring chart.
Roma has crashed out of the Champions league, and Napoli remains in the Europa league. The implications is that Roma needs to fight for the point in this encounter to try and play to grab a spot for the champions league, against a very strong Napoli defence that has only conceded an average of 1 goal per away match this season.
I go for a draw, as I expect the match to be a cagey affair in view of the defensive abilities of the away team, and the need for the host to approach the match cautiously.
My prediction is a draw
Roma vs Napoli betting tips
Draw (Stake: 8)Odds: 3.50 at Bet365
Result: 1-4 LOST (-8 units)