Last weekend, before Atalanta lost 2-0 to Cagliari, the club was in third place. They dropped to fifth place after their defeat and now find themselves in a spot for the Europa League. Before their loss to Cagliari, the club was unbeaten for eight straight games, however, the La Dea will face a team who has struggled this season and gives them a great chance to bounce back into the win column. Atalanta will have to do so without Josip Ilicic after he picked-up a red card in their match against Cagliari. As for Duvan Zapata and Robin Gosens, both are doubtful for this match.
As for Sampdoria, they got a late goal from Gianluca Caprari at the 91st minute of the match to seal the victory over SPAL. The win helped the Blucerchiati move up into 18th place, yet it was not enough to avoid relegation at the moment. The team has struggled to win as they have been inconsistent and shown a lack quality this season. Since Claudio Ranieri joined Sampdoria, the club seems to have found an identity which they lacked under Eusebio Di Francesco. In his time with the club this season, he was won one, tied two and lost one. These are pretty decent results for the new coach.
In the last three matches between these two clubs, Sampdoria has won twice and Atalanta won their most recent match-up. In their full head to head record, Sampdoria has been the better side of the two with 20 wins, 14 losses and six draws. Expect an entertaining match as Atalanta looks to keep pace for a spot into Champions League, while Sampdoria will want to avoid the relegation zone.
Predicted line up: Sampdoria vs Atalanta
Sampdoria (4-4-2): Audero – Depaoli, Colley, Murillo, Murru – Rigoni, Ekdal, Bertolacci, Jankto – Caprari, Gabbiadini.
Atalanta (3-4-1-2): Gollini – Toloi, Palomino, Masiello; Hateboer, de Roon, Freuler, Gosens – Malinovskyi – Gomez, Muriel.
Injuries and suspensions
Sampdoria: Andrea Seculin (Out Indefinitely)
Atalanta: Duvan Zapata (Doubtful), Robin Gosens (Doubtful), Josip Ilicic (Suspended)
Players to watch
Even without the services of Zapata and Ilicic, expect Luis Muriel to step up for Atalanta. The striker has been vital to the La Dea this season as he’s started four of their nine games and scored eight goals in Serie A this season. The forward has the ability to make a difference in the match and will make it difficult on the Sampdoria defense who has struggled this season and have conceded 19 goals in their 11 matches.
Sampdoria has found it difficult to score goals this season and are tied with SPAL for the fewest goals. In their past match, Caprari scored for the Blucerchiati late into injury time. The ex Roma and Inter Milan player delivered a goal inside the box to help achieve a crucial win. In his past two seasons with the club, the forward has shown the ability to find the back of the net and has scored five or more goals in each season. Having scored his first goal of the season, the Italian will look to build off his recent winner.