Serie A Matchday 16: Jose bidding to derail former club Inter's title charge

Tom Hancock
LiveScore
03/12/202113:15
Ex-Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho hosts Simone Inzaghi's in-form side this weekend
Ex-Inter Milan coach Jose Mourinho hosts Simone Inzaghi's in-form side this weekend

Inter Milan are in with a shot of seizing Serie A’s top spot this weekend if they can beat Jose Mourinho's Roma and leaders Napoli come unstuck against Atalanta.

But they will also need city rivals AC Milan to drop points — and Stefano Pioli’s men will be in no hurry to do their neighbours a favour when they host Salernitana. 

Elsewhere, the Derby dell’Appennino between Bologna and Fiorentina takes place on Sunday, while Juventus will be desperate for three points against Andriy Shevchenko's struggling Genoa.

Game of the week: Roma vs Inter Milan (Saturday, 5pm)

Mourinho faces his former employers for the first time since his return to Serie A this weekend.

Idolised by the Nerazzurri fanbase for guiding Inter to a historic treble in 2010, the Portuguese coach could lose some admirers by upsetting the visitors' title tilt on Saturday.

Simone Inzaghi's men are unbeaten in their last 10 games in all competitions and have moved to within two points of table-topping Napoli.

Victory for Inter could move them into first place with the right set of results elsewhere, while defeat for the Giallorossi may see them drop out of the European spots.

Expect plenty of goalmouth action in this one. The Nerazzurri are the top scorers in the division, having found the net 36 times already, while Roma have taken the most shots with 264.

Edin Dzeko — who made the switch to Inter this summer after five seasons at Roma — has not struck in any of his last six league appearances and will be keen to end his domestic drought when he comes up against his former team-mates.

Here are the other big games to watch this weekend…

Napoli vs Atalanta (Saturday, 7.45pm)

Luciano Spalletti's Napoli side like to dominate the middle of the park
Luciano Spalletti's Napoli side like to dominate the middle of the park

As the Serie A season edges closer to the halfway point, Napoli remain the team to beat.

They will put their 18-match unbeaten league home record on the line against in-form Atalanta, who are the only side in the division yet to lose on the road this term.

The Partenopei thumped Lazio 4-0 in their last home game and will be eager for another statement win after dropping points at Sassuolo on Wednesday.

Gian Piero Gasperini’s visitors — who have conceded the least away goals in Serie A (six) — make the long trip south also boosted by a recent 4-0 win, having thrashed Venezia at home on Tuesday.

This fixture provided great entertainment value last season, with the teams’ four meetings in league and cup producing 15 goals. 

AC Milan vs Salernitana (Saturday, 2pm)

Zlatan Ibrahimovic continues to prove that age is just a number after some impressive displays for Milan
Zlatan Ibrahimovic continues to prove that age is just a number after some impressive displays for Milan

Milan will look to put pressure on Napoli by beating lowly Salernitana, who are now on their second five-game winless run since returning to the top flight this season. 

The Rossoneri stopped a mini rot by winning 3-0 at Genoa on Wednesday and manager Pioli should be confident of his side following that up with another three points at the San Siro. 

After all, Salernitana have only registered one point against sides currently in the top half this campaign.

In addition, only Venezia (185) have faced more open-play shots than Salernitana (184) so far this term. 

That hardly bodes well for the visitors with Zlatan Ibrahimovic back fit and firing — the great Swede has scored three goals in his last three Serie A outings.

Bologna vs Fiorentina (Sunday, 11.30am)

These two rivals are locked together on 24 points heading into the first Derby dell’Appennino of the season at the Stadio Renato Dall’Ara. 

Bologna and Fiorentina are both in decent shape at the moment, having won four and three of their last five games respectively. 

The hosts beat Roma 1-0 on Wednesday, while the visitors saw off Sampdoria 3-1 the night before.

In highly-rated Dusan Vlahovic, La Viola boast Serie A’s current top scorer — the Serbian star has smashed in 12 goals in 15 appearances — and Bologna will no doubt be wary after seeing him bag a brace in this very fixture last season.

Fiorentina's Dusan Vlahovic leads the Serie A goalscoring charts and is a wanted man across Europe
Fiorentina's Dusan Vlahovic leads the Serie A goalscoring charts and is a wanted man across Europe

Juventus vs Genoa (Sunday, 7.45pm)

Inconsistent Juventus will hope to climb closer to the top four with victory over a Genoa side who are winless since mid-September.

The visitors’ sole Serie A triumph of the season did come in a 3-2 win at Cagliari on Matchday 3, and they have drawn their last three away matches.

Shevchenko's men may sense an opportunity after observing Juve’s recent home form.

The Old Lady have lost three out of seven league games at the Allianz Stadium, scoring the joint-second fewest home goals in the division (seven).

These teams met three times in the league and cup last season, with Juve winning each encounter and scoring three goals on every occasion.

The weekend’s other games

Spezia vs Sassuolo (Sunday, 2pm

Venezia vs Hellas Verona (Sunday, 2pm

Sampdoria vs Lazio (Sunday, 5pm

Empoli vs Udinese (Monday, 5.30pm

Cagliari vs Torino (Monday, 7.45pm)

Tags

Serie ASSC NapoliAtalantaAC MilanSalernitanaRomaInterBolognaFiorentinaJuventusGenoa

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