Fiorentina vs. Sampdoria Preview and Pick

Fiorentina vs. Sampdoria 4:45 PM Wednesday September 23, 2009
By Jason Green at

This match pits two teams that had different results over the last weekend and Sampdoria can prove they are legit Serie A contenders with a win at Stadio Artemio Franchi in Florence on Wednesday night. Fiorentina has not been playing well as of late, as they lost to Lyon in a Champions League match last week and then were beat by a struggling AS Roma team in league play in Rome this last weekend. Even head coach Cesare Prandelli stated that the club was “his worst Fiorentina” since he took the reigns of the club back in 2005. There were not only problems on offense, which they have had all season, in the defeat in Rome, but their defense also had a bad match giving up 3 goals.

Fiorentina is used to struggling, but coming through to finish in the top 4 of Serie A, but they will have their hands full in this match against a Sampdoria team that currently, and surprisingly, sits in first place in the league table. Sampdoria and Juventus are the only teams in Serie A that has won their first 4 matches. They have not played the toughest schedule and Fiorentina will be their first big test. They have been solid on offense (10 goals so far) and especially on defense where they have only conceded 3 goals this season. If they can win this match they can prove to the league that are a team to deal with.

Currently Sampdoria sits in first place in Serie A with 12 points while Fiorentina sits in 6th place with 7 points. Fiorentina’s defense has saved them this season while their offense has struggled. In the 4 games they have played they have only scored 4 goals, but they have only given up 4 goals. They need to find some offense or making the top 4 in the league will be hard to do this season.

Fiorentina is the home favorite in this match posted at 2.05 with Sampdoria posted at 3.50 with a draw at 3.15.

Fiorentina Recent Form
9/20/2009 Roma 3 Fiorentina 1 (Serie A)
9/16/2009 Lyon 1 Fiorentina 0 (Champions League)
9/13/2009 Fiorentina 1 Cagliari 0 (Serie A)
8/30/2009 Fiorentina 1 Palermo 0 (Serie A)
8/22/2009 Fiorentina 1 Sporting CP 1 (Champions League)

Sampdoria Recent Form:
9/20/2009 Sampdoria 4 Siena 1 (Serie A)
9/13/2009 Atalanta 0 Sampdoria 1 (Serie A)
8/30/2009 Sampdoria 3 Udinese 1 (Serie A)
8/23/2009 Catania 1 Sampdoria 2 (Serie A)
8/16/2009 Sampdoria 6 Lecce 2 (Coppa Italia)

Midfielder Juan Vargas of Fiorentina will not play in this match due to an injury and the club’s off-season additions of Lorenzo De Silvestri, Savio Nsereko and Jose Castillo will also not be available in this home match. Coach Prandelli may use a 3-man attack in this game to get more offense, as Stevan Jovetic may move up to help strikers Mutu and Gilardino.

Sampdoria DF Pietro Accardi, MF Franco Semioli and GK Vincenzo Fiorillo are all injured and will not play in this match. Fernando Tissone was suspended for the last match, but is available for this important away match.

Giampaolo Pazzini and Antonio Cassano will be the offensive weapons for Sampdoria in this game, as in the 4 games they have won this duo has been solid. The Fiorentina defense cannot let either of these dangerous strikers alone around the box.

It is becoming more clear that the lack of off-season signings is hurting Fiorentina, especially on offense.

Adrian Mutu and Alberto Gilardino have to get back to scoring goals for Fiorentina, as these guys are international class players, but have not played as such in the early part of the season.

Fiorentina GK Sebastien Frey has been solid this season despite the struggles on defense and at the midfield and he will have to play another solid match against a Sampdoria offense that is playing with a ton of confidence.

It will really help Fiorentina if they can score an early goal, as it may take some winds out of the sails of Sampdoria and it will give some much needed confidence to their struggling offense.

Jason’s Pick: Fiorentina has had major problems scoring this season and could only muster 1 goal against a struggling Roma team last week. However, with Stevan Jovetic moving up to help out the new formation may help in scoring some goals. However, Sampdoria is riding high, as I see them continuing their solid play and staying with Fiorentina this match for a 2-1 win or a 1-1 draw.