KICK off: 20 February 16:00


Information: Simone Inzaghi has to negotiate a growing injury crisis in defence, just days ahead of Lazio’s return to continental action, as Wesley Hoedt is suspended and Luiz Felipe – whose season was effectively ended last week – Stefan Radu and goalkeeper Thomas Strakosha are out injured. In-form wing-back Manuel Lazzari is also suspended on Saturday, so Mateo Musacchio should be drafted in to central defence and Mohamed Fares or club captain Senad Lulic – who has struggled for opportunities since recovering from injury – will start on the left flank, with Adam Marusic switching to the right. Given the upcoming clash with Bayern, Inzaghi may decide to rest one of his dynamic front pairing, as Vedat Muriqi and Felipe Caicedo stand ready to deputise for Ciro Immobile or Joaquin Correa. Sampdoria, contrastingly, have an almost full squad at their disposal, as long-term injury victim Manolo Gabbiadini has been involved in full training and is now nearing a comeback. Keita Balde returns to his former club in fine form and will lead the line in Claudio Ranieri’s XI, with Fabio Quagliarella favourite to partner him, though Gaston Ramirez could instead feature if the former Roma coach opts for a more cautious 4-4-1-1 setup. The ongoing battle for places in the Samp engine room continues, with Morten Thorsby and Albin Ekdal competing to partner Adrien Silva in the centre, while Antonio Candreva will hope to usurp young Mikkel Damsgaard on the right wing as he also gets set to meet his former team, in the city of his birth.
Prediction: Over 2,5 goals
Stake: 8/10
League: Italy
Result: pending
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Prediction of the day: Lazio – Sampdoria

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