Serie A Week 2: 3 Key Matches to Watch
The 18/19 Serie A season kicked off last weekend and saw some exciting fixtures; Juventus narrowly avoided upset in Verona with a 3-2 win over Chievo, Lazio and Napoli battled in Rome with Ancelotti’s team coming back from behind to win 2-1 and Inter Milan were left shocked as they succumbed to a 1-0 defeat to Sassuolo.
The second week brings some really exciting fixtures; Cristiano Ronaldo is making his home debut for Juventus in a match against Lazio, Roma host Atalanta and Napoli face another tough fixture as they host AC Milan in Naples.
Juventus vs Lazio – Saturday 18:00 ITA/17:00 UK
Saturday evening sees two big Serie A games, kicking off with champions Juventus hosting Simone Inzaghi’s Lazio. Cristiano Ronaldo is set to make his official home debut for the Old Lady whilst the Biancoceleste will have a point to prove after tensions on and off the pitch over the last week.
Juventus have a clean bill of health, with only Leonardo Spinazzola injured; whilst Lazio have both Lucas Leiva and Senad Lulic available once again, after being suspended for the match against Napoli.
Last season, Lazio won this fixture, bringing to an end a string of 47 consecutive home victories; whilst Juventus beat Lazio in Rome 1-0. The two teams were also the competitors of the 2017 Supercoppa Italiana, which Lazio won 3-2 thanks to an injury time winner from young midfielder Alessandro Murgia.
Napoli vs AC Milan – Saturday 20:30 ITA/19:30 UK
The second of the Saturday fixtures is Napoli vs AC Milan, which promises to be an intriguing game for a whole host of reasons. Newly appointed Napoli head coach Carlo Ancelotti returns to face his beloved Milan; whilst Gonzalo Higuain faces off against his former team – the midfielder having moved from Napoli to Juventus, before moving to Milan on loan this season; the deal including an option-to-buy.
Napoli came out on top last weekend against Lazio, coming back from behind in a spirited performance. Milan, meanwhile, did not play; having been scheduled to face Genoa before the tragic bridge collapse in the Italian city – the match being therefore called off as a result. Milan are therefore eager to get their season started, with new boys Gonzalo Higuain and Mattia Caldara ready to shine in Naples.
This match will likely be hard fought, with the big spending of Milan against the more modest, in comparison, spending of the Naples-based side. Both teams have a point to prove and there will be an urgency in both camps to start picking up points from games like these as quickly as possible this season.
Roma vs Atalanta – Monday 20:30 ITA/19:30 UK
Monday night football always gives football fans a little bit more after an exciting weekend and this time, Roma will face off against Atalanta. Both teams got their 18/19 seasons off to a winning start, with the capital city club edging Torino 1-0 in a tough contest, whilst Atalanta demolished newly promoted Frosinone 4-0.
Atalanta faced off against FC Copenhagen on Thursday night in the first leg of the final Europa League playoff round, registering over 20 shots but failing to find the back of the net in a 0-0 draw. However, Atalanta will be hoping that they can get back to full fitness in time to travel to Rome and face off against last season’s Champions League semi-finalists.
Roma are likely favourites for this fixture but Atalanta have the attacking options available to them to do some serious damage. Roma will have a lot to prove after selling both Radja Nainggolan and Alisson; investing funds in younger players to build for the future.