Parma welcomes Napoli to Stadio Ennio Tardini on Wednesday in Round 35 in the Italian Serie A.
The hosts are in 14th place in the Serie A with 40 points from 34 matches whereas Napoli is in 6th place with 56 points and is part of a three-team group that is fighting for Europa League qualification. Parma has a record of 11-7-16 on the year while Napoli has posted a 16-8-10 mark after 34 rounds of Italian top-flight action.
Parma won the last head to head meetings between these teams but before that Napoli won four straight wins.
Parma’s run of poor form continued last weekend when they lost 2-3 to a Sampdoria side that is currently playing well. The home team started the game strongly and they took a 2-0 lead into the half. But Sampdoria turned things around in the second half to deal Parma its fifth loss in six matches and leapfrog the home team in the team standings.
Their slim hopes of making it to Europe have now been wiped out but Parma still needs to think about getting the three points in this match since their safety is not yet guaranteed. Roberto D’Aversa’s boys are 11 points clear of the relegation zone with four matches left to play but if they continue to play with poor form, bad things could happen and they don’t want to leave anything to chance.
Andreas Cornelius leads Parma with a total of 11 goals scored this season. Dejan Kulusevski and Gervinho have netted seven times each this season. Kulusevski leads the team with four assists while Hernani has three assists this year.
Parma is ranked 11th in the Serie A with a total of 47 goals scored on the year. They are tied for 11th in scoring defense with a total of 50 goals conceded. They are 8th in passing with a total of 33 assists this season. They are also ranked 12th in goal difference with their -3 goals.
Parma Possible Starting Lineup:
Sepe; Darmian, Iacoponi, Dermaku, Gagliolo; Hernani, Brugman, Barilla; Kulusevski, Inglese, Gervinho
Odds from BetOnline as of 07/21/2020
Napoli returned to its winning ways on Sunday with a 2-1 victory over Udinese. Previously, the team had been forced to take a point each from their encounters with Bologna and AC Milan. Gennaro Gattuso lost Dries Martins to injury against Udinese but his replacement, Arkadiusz Milik scored within seconds from being sent in while Matteo Politano netted late to give Napoli the win.
They have little to play the rest of the way since, in sixth place, European qualification is meaningless after they won the Copa Italia. Napoli is guaranteed passage to the Europa League but fourth place Lazio is now out of their reach Gattuso’s men will have to go all the way in the Champions League if they are to play alongside the elites of Europe next season.
Arkadiusz Milik leads Napoli with a total of 11 goals scored this season. Dries Mertens has found the back of the net nine times this year while Lorenzo Insigni has netted six times for the team. Jose Callejon leads the team with seven assists while also scoring four goals. Fabian Ruiz has six assists and two goals scored.
Napoli is ranked 7th in goal scoring with a total of 55 on the year. They are tied for 7th in defense with a total of 45 goals conceded on the term. Napoli is 5th in assists with a total of 41 on the year and they are tied for 6th in goal difference with their +10.
Napoli Possible Starting Lineup:
Ospina; Di Lorenzo, Koulibaly, Manolas, Rui; Zielinski, Ruiz, Demme; Politano, Insigne, Lozano
The last time these two sides met was on December 14, 2019, and it was Parma who won 2-1. However, in the last match played between these two teams at this venue, Napoli blanked Parma 4-0 last February 24, 2019. Head to head, Parma has won just once in their last eight assignments at the Stadio Ennio Tardini. They are also without a win in their last six home assignments.
Parma will play this match without Matteo Scozzarella and Jujaj Kucka while top goal scorer Andreas Cornelius is questionable with a muscle issue. Bruno Alves has also played hurt and he isn’t expected to feature here. However, Roberto Inglese has gotten his health back and could start at the top. Matteo Darmian and Alberto Grassi will also be coming back from their respective suspensions.
Milik picked up a quick score the last time out but he also earned his fifth booking of the season and will be suspended for this contest. Gattuso is now hoping that Mertens recovers for this match but could be forced to move Lorenzo Insigne to a central role if they will be short on attacking options. On defense, Giovanni Di Lorenzo will be back from a yellow card suspension and is expected to start.
Napoli could be without two attacking options in Milik and Mertens but the home team has been in terrible form and have their own injury issues to deal with. I’m backing the visitors to take all three points from this home match.
Odds from BetOnline as of 07/21/2020
Four out of the last five head to head meetings between these two teams have yielded a total of over 2.5 goals. These teams have combined to score 28 goals in their last 10 head to head matches and 10 goals in their last three encounters. Seven out of their last 10 head to head matches have produced a total of over 2.5 goals including their last three encounters. I like these teams to hit the over again.
Prediction: Over 2.5 goals (-121).