With only a day’s gap between the last game of the midweek round of Serie A and the first-weekend encounter, it’s been a hectic seven days in the world of Italian football.
It was Cristiano Ronaldo who made the headlines in the Italian press on Thursday morning after he kept his cool to convert a 96th-minute penalty to win the match versus Genoa at the Allianz Stadium in Turin.
Serie A Match of the round: AS Roma vs Napoli | Saturday 2pm
Roma boss Paulo Fonseca has introduced an aspect of tenacity to his team, something that the club’s supporters will welcome after years of watching their side collapse all-too easily. In the midweek round, central defender Federico Fazio was sent off when the Giallorossi were only 1-0 up versus Udinese, but they still managed a 4-0 win by the time the whistle blew at the end of the 90 minutes.
They face Napoli in the Derby del Sole, a side that has been overtaken by both Roma and Lazio in the table as they slipped to 6th following a 2-2 draw with Atalanta. It seems like Carlo Ancelotti is struggling to work out exactly how to make this team tick. If they lose on Saturday to a close rival in the table, the Partenopei will concede further ground in what has been a disappointing season so far.
Best of the rest
There’s plenty of other entertaining action to choose from this weekend, as title-hopefuls Inter Milan face Bologna on Saturday tea-time, while later that evening Torino host cross-city rivals Juventus in the Derby della Mole at the Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino.
High-scoring Atalanta play a Cagliari team who are punching above their weight this season in the Sunday morning kick-off, while Fiorentina host Parma and AC Milan look to halt their struggles when they play Lazio at San Siro on Sunday evening. That will not be an easy task however, as Simone Inzaghi’s men are fresh from back-to-back victories and a 4-0 demolition of Torino in midweek.
Serie A player to watch: Romelu Lukaku (£1.94) vs Bologna
Here is a player that now looks unrecognisable from the lethargic and disinterested figure that featured for Manchester United last season. Revitalised with the fresh challenge of a new league and having forged a superb relationship with Inter boss Antonio Conte, Lukaku is currently on fire, having netted seven times in his opening nine league starts for the Nerazzurri.
— Premier Sports 📺 (@PremierSportsTV) October 29, 2019
It seems that the striker can only go from strength to strength, and is certainly one to watch as the weeks go by.