Friday, March 31, 2023

Prediction: Lazio vs Sampdoria

Veselin Trajkovic in Free Soccer Predictions 26 Feb 2023


Verdict: Total goals under 2.5

Best odds: 22/25

Bookmaker: Unibet

Lazio will welcome Sampdoria to the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on Monday evening, for what will be one of the matches played within the 24th round in the Serie A season. The two teams need the points in relatively equal measure, though their respective end-of-term goals are very different.


Lazio are locked in the battle for Champions League qualification, which means finishing in one of the top four spots in the league. At the moment, they are just outside that bracket, sitting fifth with 42 points, five less than Inter Milan in second place, two less than city rivals AS Roma in third, as well as AC Milan in fourth. There is obviously everything to play for here, for sixth-place Atalanta as well, who trail Lazio by one point.

The only certainty at this point is that Napoli will be playing in the Champions League next term, probably as the new Italian champions as they lead the way by 17 points in front of Inter.

The recent form of Maurizio Sarri’s team hasn’t been that great. Their last-six run in all competitions started with a 1-0 defeat away to Juventus in the quarterfinals of the Coppa Italia. Then they drew 1-1 away to Hellas Verona, lost 0-2 at home to Atalanta, beat Romanian side CFR Cluj at home by 1-0 in the Europa Conference League play-offs, beat Salernitana away by 0-2, and played a goalless draw in the second leg against CFR Cluj to book a place in the round of 16 of the third-tier UEFA competition. They’ve been drawn to face Dutch side AZ Alkmaar there.

Team News

Sarri has several important players back in contention after being forced to make do without them in the previous match.

Winger Mattia Zaccagni has returned from illness, as has midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic. Centre-back Patric couldn’t play against CFR Cluj to a European ban and is obviously available for this match. Winger Pedro is also back, having recovered from a broken nose, and he’s been training with a protective mask.

With Ivan Provedel in goal, Patric should join Nicolo Casale in the heart of defence, with Adam Marusic on the left and Elseid Hysaj on the right. Danilo Cataldi will be the midfield anchor, with Milinkovic-Savic and Luis Alberto the box-to-box roles. Zaccagni is expected to slot into the attacking line, flanking striker Ciro Immobile together with Felipe Anderson.


Things aren’t going well for Sampdoria this season at all, and with each passing round they seem closer to playing in the Serie B in 2023/24. A win in this match would, perhaps, rekindle some hope for their survival, but not many will believe that likely to happen.

At the moment, Sampdoria are second from the wrong end of the table, with just 11 points from 23 matches, two more than the winless Cremonese at the bottom, six less than Verona in 18th place, and nine less than Spezia in 17th, the spot Dejan Stankovic’s men must aim for if they want to survive.

While Lazio’s recent form may not have been great, it looks absolutely superb compared to that of Sampdoria. “Il Doria” lost four of their last six matches, drawing the remaining two. The run started with a 1-0 defeat away to Empoli. Then they were beaten by Udinese at home by 0-1, and 2-0 away to Atalanta, before drawing 2-2 away to Monza and 0-0 at home against Inter. The last match to date, played last Saturday, was a 1-2 home defeat to Bologna.

Team News

Defender Koray Gunter (hamstring) and winger Ignacio Pussatto (knee) will miss out again.

On the other hand, defender Jeison Murillo, as well as attacking midfielders Filip Djuricic and Abdelhamid Sabiri should be in contention, following fitness issues of their own.

With Emil Audero in goal, Murillo should join Bram Nuytinck and Bruno Amione at the back. Harry Winks should pair up with Michael Cuisance in the middle of the park, flanked by Tommaso Aguello and Mehdi Leris. Djuricic should play in support of strikers Manolo Gabbiadini and Sam Lammers.


Sampdoria have a mountain to climb in order to stand a serious chance of survival, and it feels like they have no time to lose anymore; the much-needed improvement in their performances and results cannot come soon enough. However, if Lazio want to play in the Champions League next season, they can’t afford to drop any points at home against any relegation-battling team. There shouldn’t, however, be too many goals here; one or two should be enough.

Verdict: Total goals under 2.5

Best odds: 22/25

Bookmaker: Unibet


Veselin Trajkovic

Vesko is a football writer that likes to observe the game for what it is, focusing on teams, players and their roles, formations, tactics, rather than stats. He follows the English Premier League closely, Liverpool FC in particular. His articles have been published on seven different football blogs.



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