Fourth-placed Roma will look to reignite their Serie A title challenge as they host lower mid-table Cagliari at the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday night. Eusebio Di Francesco’s side will be strong favourites against a Cagliari team who have won only three in their last 12 league outings.
Where and when: Stadio Olimpico, Rome- 16 December, kick-off 19:45
Where you can see Roma v Cagliari: BT Sport, bet365 live streaming
Last time: Roma triumphed 1-0 at this stadium in January thanks to Edin Dzeko’s decider, while the fixture in Sardinia ended in a 2-2 draw. Cagliari have not beaten Roma in their last six attempts.
Roma v Cagliari Predictions and Preview
Disappointing back-to-back away draws against Genoa and Chievo Verona have scuppered Roma’s title bid yet they lie only five points off leaders Inter with a game in hand.
They have won six of their eight home league games this campaign – with potentially costly defeats at the hands of Inter and Napoli – and have only conceded seven times in eight home games.
Cagliari are without a win in three league outings yet a defeat to Inter followed by draws against Bologna and Sampdoria does not represent a particularly disappointing return.
The Sardinians have won twice on the road this season – at Spal and Udinese – but a draw in Rome would represent an excellent result – they last took a point in away game against Roma in 2013.
The bookmakers have made the hosts heavy favourites for all three points with odds of 1/4, while an unlikely away victory is priced at an outlandish 13/1 and a draw is available at 29/5.
Roma are likely to stick with their fluid 4-3-3 formation while the visitors are likely to keep their side compact in a 3-5-2 system with Joao Pedro supporting Leonardo Pavolotti in attack.
One to watch for Roma: Dzeko has already hit eight league goals this campaign and found the net in Roma’s last home match – a win over Spal. The Bosnia international striker is priced at 4/5 to find the net at any time in this fixture.
One to watch for Cagliari: Midfielder Joao Pedro is the visitor’s top league goalscorer this campaign with five goals in just 13 league starts, and he has found the net in each of the side’s past two away games at Bologna and Udinese. He is priced temptingly at 21/4 to score anytime here.
Long shot: Roma threw away a two-goal lead in Sardinia last season as Cagliari battled back to a 2-2 draw, sealed with Marco Sau’s equaliser three minutes from time while in their last outing, Cagliari battled back from two goals down to hold Sampdoria. For Roma to lead at the break in this one before the full-time result being a draw is priced at 28/1.