Genoa v Atalanta – Stadio Luigi Ferraris at 11:30 GMT +1
Genoa head coach Aurelio Andreazzoli has said it’s “an honour” to be compared to Atalanta boss Gian Piero Gasperini ahead of this weekend’s encounter, although insisted it’s too early for such praise. The Rossoblu supremo arrived from Empoli in the summer and is already garnering plenty of attention in Italy.
Andreazzoli may have overseen a relegation from Serie A last term, but the style and swagger Empoli played with, plus the radical improvement in players during his stint, attracted many admiring glances. Genoa swooped in to sign the highly-rated coach and supporters have been impressed by the club’s early efforts.
Sure, Il Grifone made the most of poor Fiorentina defending and relied on the woodwork to table a 2-1 triumph before the international break, although Genoa also won many plaudits for their attacking attitude during a thrilling 3-3 draw at Roma on the opening weekend of the new Serie A season.
Atalanta suffered a surprise 2-3 home defeat to Torino last time out, a week after winning at Spal by the same scoreline. Gasperini – who had two spells on the Genoa bench and remains a fan hero – is looking for consistency from his group, particularly with Champions League involvement on the horizon next week.
The Bergamo club’s boss was particularly frustrated by his team’s defending from set-pieces against Torino and has demanded an improvement in concentration levels coming into this Marassi clash. Atalanta are fair favourites to bounce back, although a better bet can be found in the goals markets.
Goals on the agenda
We might only be two rounds of fixtures deep in Serie A, but goals have been a regular feature of the opening exchanges with 60% of the contests featuring three or more goals and the same figure returning profit for Both Teams To Score backers. On average, 3.25 goals per-game have been seen in Italy’s top-tier.
Sunday’s early fixture should follow the early season themes with Andreazzoli and Gasperini renowned for their exciting, offensive approaches. Already the pair have produced profitable Over 2.5 Goals returns in all four of their combined fixtures, with three such games going Over 4.5 Goals.
Encounters between Genoa and Atalanta have also been kind for goals-based backers in previous campaigns with the past seven meetings between the pair breaking the Over 2.5 Goals. All the evidence points towards another thriller and Over 2.75 Goals therefore holds plenty of appeal at 1.78 this weekend.
Asian Total Goals Betting Recommendation: Over 2.750 Goals at 1.780
Preview by: @MarkOHaire.