Serie A Midweek Tips: Atalanta let loose, Roma comfortable

In his final look at Serie A in 2020, Dave Farrar predicts La Dea will run riot against Bologna, an easy Giallorossi victory with Cagliari and Benevento to trouble Udinese...

Exciting Atalanta

Bologna v Atalanta
Wednesday, 19:45
Live on Betfair Live Video

A predictable theme on which to end 2020, and probably the bet that has sustained us more than any. Atalanta are back in goalscoring form after their stunning second half display against Roma, and they are up against a team in Bologna who like to play a bit themselves.

Three of Bologna's last four games have gone Over 3.5 Goals, and they look vulnerable here to a team that looks to have put the Papu Gomez problem behind them. The return to form of Josip Ilicic, who has a great scoring record against Bologna, fills that Gomez hole in the short term, and he allows others to play.

Goals come from everywhere in that Atalanta team, and it was interesting to see the likes of Robin Gosens and Remo Freuler once again getting into excellent attacking positions. It's a sign of confidence, and that Roma result could be one that catapults Atalanta into 2021.

I think that Bologna will be the fall guys on this occasion, but they're capable of landing blows of their own, and this looks set to provide us with a high scoring conclusion to 2020.

Roma return

Roma v Cagliari
Wednesday, 19:45
Live on FreeSports and Betfair Live Video

Roma's season has been a largely successful, and yet slightly curious one. They're unbeaten on the field in Serie A in all but two games, but in those two games they have thrown in appalling performances.

Losing 4-0 in Naples in the aftermath of Diego Maradona's death was excusable, as it was a strange time to be a Roma player, but Sunday in Bergamo was bizarre. Roma led, should have made it two, and then capitulated in the second half to lose 4-1. There's a fragility about them that will stop them being Champions, but a fluency which convinces you that they can still aim high.

Paulo Fonseca will look to shove that Atalanta display into the far distance as his team face Cagliari in the final game before the short winter break. I expect them to be wounded and ready to atone, and wouldn't be at all surprised if they are back to their old goalscoring ways. They had scored eight in their previous two before facing Atalanta.

Cagliari look relatively settled having drawn four of their last five, but have been found wanting when they have faced the big guns this season, losing by at least two goals against Lazio, Atalanta, Juventus and Inter. I expect something similar to happen here, and so will back Roma -1 on the Asian Handicap.

Benevento doing better

Udinese v Benevento
Wednesday, 19:45
Live on Betfair Live Video

Benevento have lost only one of their last six and while they haven't exactly surged up the table, they are starting to look as they believe that they belong in Serie A, and their trip to Udine on Wednesday night may reap more rewards.

A 2-0 win against Genoa last time was appropriate reward for what has been a fine run, including draws against Juventus and Lazio, and Pippo Inzaghi will hope that, in this strange season, a top half finish could even be on the cards. For now, though, the objective is extremely clear, and that's simply to be a Serie A team next season.

Benevento are looking to win consecutive Serie A games for the first time in their history, and to do that they'll need to beat an Udinese side who are now unbeaten in six in Serie A, although draws against Crotone and Cagliari in their last two matches have been pretty uninspiring.

I think that gives Inzaghi and his team an opportunity, and while it may be a small stretch to see them winning here, they look Udinese's equal, and they are worth supporting with a goal start on the Asian Handicap.

Merry Christmas to all of you, and let me echo the heartfelt sentiment of many others in hoping that 2021 is significantly better than 2020. It can hardly fail to be.

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