Dec 23, 2020 at 7.45pm UK
N'Zola (10')
Erlic (2'), Chabot (5'), Terzi (72')
FT(HT: 1-1)
Destro (16'), Criscito (73' pen.)
Pandev (33'), Ghiglione (43'), Destro (70'), Zajc (75')

Preview: Spezia vs. Genoa - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Spezia vs. Genoa - prediction, team news, lineups: ID:427497: from db_amp
Sports Mole previews Wednesday's Serie A clash between Spezia and Genoa, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Two sides struggling at the bottom of the table face each other on Wednesday night, as Genoa travel to Spezia in what could be viewed as an early-season six-pointer.

Spezia went down 2-1 to Inter Milan on the weekend, while Genoa conceded two goals without reply away to Benevento, which proved to be the final nail in the coffin for Rolando Maran who was then sacked on Monday.

Match preview

Vincenzo Italiano's side are showing ominous form as they come into this match without a win in six league matches and currently sit four points clear of the relegation zone in 17th place.

Italiano will be pinpointing their defensive frailties as an area for improvement given that his side have kept a clean sheet on only three occasions in Serie A this season while conceding two or more goals in the other 10 matches.

In fact, no side has managed a higher such tally in the top five European leagues this season.

The Spezia manager will also be conscious of his side's dire home form which is the joint worst in the league this season, next to Torino's.

Genoa's loss to Benevento was Maran's last match in charge after it was announced on Monday that he and the club would part ways.

Genoa have been on a torrid run of form, having won none of their last 12 Serie A matches, and now find themselves well and truly in a relegation battle.

It has been widely reported that Davide Ballardini will return to manage Genoa for the fourth time in his managerial career.

Across that time, Ballardini has achieved an average points ratio of 1.38 across the 78 Serie A games that he has been in charge.

Ballardini's first task will be to make sure his side avoid losing two consecutive games against newly-promoted sides in a single top-flight season for the first time since April 2016, as they travel to relegation rivals, Spezia.

The new manager will hope to draw inspiration from Genoa's strong track record against Spezia that has seen them win four, and lose only once to the Serie A newcomers.

Spezia Serie A form: DDLLDL
Spezia form (all competitions): WDLLDL

Genoa Serie A form: LLDLDL
Genoa form (all competitions): WLDLDL

Team News

Valon Behrami is expected to come back into the starting XI after having to settle for the substitutes' bench in recent weeks.

To compound Genoa's woes, Ballardini will be without many of their key players, with what has become an extensive injury list.

Currently, Genoa are without former Chelsea full-back Davide Zappacosta, Federico Marchetti, Francesco Cassata, Davide Biraschi, Cristian Zapata, Goran Pandev and Vittorio Parigini.

For Spezia, centre-back Julian Chabot will return from suspension, with captain Claudio Terzi likely to make way.

Spezia are still monitoring the recovery of Juan Ramos, and he could feature, though Federico Mattiello, Elio Capradossi and goalkeeper Jeroen Zoet remain sidelined.

Spezia possible starting lineup:
Provedel; Ferrer, Chabot, Erlic, Bastoni; Pobega, Ricci, Estevez; Gyasi, Nzola, Farias

Genoa possible starting lineup:
Perin; Goldaniga, Bani, Masiello, Pellegrini; Ghiglione, Lerager, Sturaro, Pjaca; Shomurodov, Destro

We say: Spezia 0-1 Genoa

There will not be much between these two sides on the day, but we could well see the boost of having a new manager at the helm make a real difference, and that is why we are predicting a narrow Genoa win.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting over 1.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Over 1.5:data

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1 38287389355491
2 38247774413379
3 38239690474378
4 38239677383978
5 38245986414577
6 38215126155668
7 381881268581062
8 381711106456862
9 38157165254-252
10 381112154648-245
11 381012164758-1142
12 381011175165-1441
13 38913164759-1240
14 381010184258-1640
15 38912175272-2039
16 38910194359-1637
17 38716155069-1937
18 38712194075-3533
19 3865274592-4723
20 38311243983-4420
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