A chasm has formed at the top of the Serie A standings; you have Inter, Juve and Lazio occupying the top three positions and holding an 11-points gap over the nearest team in fourth. Below the trio are multiple teams vying for the last Champions League spot, including Atalanta and Roma. Atalanta currently occupy the fourth position and lead their Saturday opponent by three points. The team from Bergamo will be keen to extend their lead over Roma and have some breathing space in the race to Europe’s premier club competition.
Atalanta is looking to qualify for their third international campaign in four seasons, as they sit three points ahead of fifth-placed Roma. Those three points could, however, turn into six points by the end of the match, should Atlanta win this match. Going into the final straights of the league campaign could prove to be a healthy lead, considering the form of those around them.
Since the turn of the year, Atalanta has only lost one game in the league – a 1-2 at home to SPAL. In that run they’ve played six games, won three and drawn two. The marque results in that run include a 1-1 draw away at Inter and 5-0 and 7-0 drubbing of Parma and Torino, respectively. Their last game was a 2-1 away win over Fiorentina at the Artemio Franchi Stadium: a match they had to come from behind to win.
Overall this season, Atalanta have played 23 matches and earned 42 points thanks to 12 wins, six draws and five losses. They are the league’s best attacking outfit, and have scored 61 goals followed by Lazio on 53 goals. Defensively, the Orobici have also fared okay, with 31 goals conceded.
Surprisingly, Atalanta have earned most of their points away from the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d’Italia. At home they have only picked up 17 points from a possible 33, with only five wins and two draws. This is despite scoring 31 goals on home soil.
Roma’s season is unravelling, after a fine start to the season before the holiday break. Since the start of the year, however, Paulo Fonseca’s men have only won one out of six Serie A matches, a run that has seen Atalanta meet and overtake them on the table. Now they run the risk of missing out on Champions League football for the second season in a row, after four consecutive appearances in the competition. In that terrible run they’ve lost four times and drawn once. Particularly worrying is the fact that they lost three of those matches on home soil, to Torino, Juventus and Bologna. If things don’t change, it’s likely the manager will pay for it with his job.
They come into this match off the back of two consecutive losses, and will probably dread making it three. Overall this season, Roma have played 23 matches and earned 39 points, thanks to 11 wins, six losses and draws apiece. They’ve scored 42 goals and conceded 31 goals. When playing away from home, though, the Giallorossi obtained 21 points from 11 matches with six wins, three draws and two losses. In those away matches, they’ve scored 20 goals and conceded 11.
After conceding only 15 goals in their first 17 games, Roma has shipped the same number of goals in six Serie A games. Paulo Fonseca’s men have conceded at least two goals in five of their last six games, and scored in all except in their defeat to Torino at the Stadio Olimpico. Consequently, four of their last games have seen over 3.5 goals. They face an Atalanta side that have been banging the goals in for fun. The Orobici have scored 18 goals in their last six Serie A games, scoring at least twice in four of those games. In a game featuring one of the leakiest defenses in the last few games, against one of the best-attacking sides, we reckon that the goal market is where the value for sportsbetting tips is at. The bookmaker Bet9ja offers the following odds on the goal market: Over 3.5 goals – 1.94 odds; over 2.5 goals – 1.38 odds.
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