Verdict: Napoli win
Best Odds: 19/20
Hoping to try and find some stability on the road, Napoli will make the trip to the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara on Monday evening when they meet a struggling Bologna.
Starting with the hosts, while Bologna might have managed to sign off 2021 with a much-needed 3-0 win against Bologna, it appears that might have just been a minor boost for Siniša Mihajlović’s men. Marking their return to action last week with a last-gasp 2-1 defeat away at relegation scrappers Cagliari, the Rossoblù almost find themselves stuck in Serie A limbo. Losing four of their last five top-flight contests, a run highlighted by a 2-1 defeat against Bologna, the one-time Sporting Lisbon boss will also have a real headache over his side’s extended problems on home soil. Including a sluggish 1-0 loss against Venezia on November 21st, Monday’s hosts have collected just three points from their last four matchups at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara. Likewise, losing each of their last three meetings against the Champions League contenders, Bologna will know that they should face another stern test here.
After recovering from COVID-19, full-back Aaron Hickey is expected to make his return on Monday evening.
However, the duo of Musa Barrow and Ibrahima Mbaye will be missing here as they’re away at the AFCON.
As for the visitors, while Napoli might have enjoyed a stunning start to the 2021/22 campaign, the Blues now find themselves in a battle to try and gain some stability. Crashing out of the Coppa Italia last week thanks to an action-packed 5-2 defeat at home against Fiorentina, Luciano Spalletti’s men have managed to win just a trio of their last nine matchups across all formats. Opening up Monday’s meeting at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara knowing they’re now in a real uphill battle to lift this year’s Serie A crown, the former Inter Milan boss will be desperate for his side to find a boost here. Struggling to find a similar level that saw them claim an eye-catching 1-0 win away at AC Milan last month, Napoli should at least be boosted by a rampant record against Monday’s hosts. Landing a 3-0 romp when they welcomed Bologna to the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium back in October, they have picked up 12 points from their previous four Serie A meetings against the Rossoblù.
With David Ospina picking up a knock in midweek, it is expected that Alex Meret will start between the sticks here.
Manchester United loanee Axel Tuanzebe is expected to make his Napoli debut on Monday evening.
Key Factors to Consider
- When the two sides faced off back in October, Napoli picked up a 3-0 victory at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium.
- Likewise, including three Serie A wins on the bounce, Napoli have taken 10 points from Bologna in their last four meetings.
- Bologna have lost four of their last five Serie A matchups, conceding over 1.5 goals in each of those defeats.
- Napoli have managed to win just a trio of their last nine contests across all formats, a run that stems back to November 28th.
- Monday’s guests have seen five of their last six away fixtures finish with both teams finding the net.
While Napoli might be in the midst of an inconsistent spell, Monday’s guests should be smelling a golden chance here. Looking to bounce back from that action-packed Coppa Italia defeat against Fiorentina last week, Gli Azzurri will be boosted by a rampant record against Bologna. Opening up the New Year with a 2-1 loss away at Cagliari, the Rossoblù have lost four of their last five Serie A contests and have shown some extended issues on home soil. Landing a 3-0 romp when the two sides faced off back in October and picking up 10 points from their last four Serie A meetings against Monday’s hosts, we’re backing an away victory here.
Verdict: Napoli win
Best Odds: 19/20
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