Fourth place Roma entertain Atalanta in a Serie A clash between two sides who have offered up some of the best football this term.
Following the Giallorossi’s domestic eight game unbeaten run, Eusebio Di Francesco’s men have faltered slightly and are without a win in three games in all competitions.
Where and when: Stadio Olimpico – 6 January, kick-off 17:00
Where you can see Roma vs. Atalanta: BT Sport, bet365 live streaming
Last time: The Orobici opened the scoring and frustrated the hosts who needed the win to maintain their Scudetto charge. Edin Dzeko cancelled out Jasmin Kurtic’s goal in a 1-1 draw.
Roma v Atalanta Predictions and Preview
Flying high on the continent, last year’s surprise package Atalanta are well in contention to force their way in to the European places come May. Gian Piero Gasperini’s overachievers recently toppled Milan and relish the opportunity to beat the more acclaimed clubs in the country.
The Bergamo based outfit are currently jostling with the likes of Udinese, Torino and Fiorentina and a triumph in the eternal city would put pressure on Sampdoria who currently hold a marginal advantage. Atalanta are an attractive 4/1 to take the three points and won’t be fazed by the occasion having beaten Napoli home and away, and Inter on home soil in the previous season. Talisman and skipper Alejandro Gomez is 11/1 to score during the 90 minutes.
In the home dugout, Di Francesco is in the midst of his own mini competition. As things stand, two from Roma, their bitter foes Lazio and Inter will finish in the much coveted Champions League spots and the Giallorossi have perhaps exceeded expectations since the former Sassuolo Coach took over last summer.
Roma need to get back to winning ways and this won’t be a foregone conclusion. Di Francesco came up against his old side last weekend and struggled, and Atalanta have the ability to provide another difficult afternoon.
Nevertheless, the capital club are strong favourites at 2/1 and the most important thing will be clinch the victory and regroup ahead of an exciting second half of the season. Stephan El Shaarawy is 13/1 to add to his league tally and score last.
One to watch for Roma: Radja Nainggolan is the heartbeat of the Roma side but only has two goals to his name this time around. The dynamic Belgian is 12/1 to open proceedings.
One to watch for Atalanta: Josip Ilicic is Atalanta’s top scorer and has been a revelation since moving from the Viola. The midfielder is 7/1 to net any time.
Long shot: Historically, the Lupi have enjoyed the upper hand in this contest, with 12 wins from 18 clashes but Gasperini’s men have taken five points from the last three encounters. With both teams locked on 29 goals apiece this campaign, an inviting 2-2 draw with Atalanta to score first is 35/1.