MX23RW : Friday, July 30 04:39:14| >> :600:143197:143197:
Nov 2, 2019 at 2pm UK at Stadio Olimpico (Roma)
Attendance: 34,502
Zaniolo (19'), Veretout (55' pen.)
FT(HT: 1-0)
Milik (72')

Preview: Roma vs. Napoli - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Serie A clash between Roma and Napoli, with predictions, team news and potential lineups.

Paulo Fonseca's Roma welcome Napoli to the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday night in a battle of two sides currently in Serie A's top six.

The Giallorossi are currently fourth in the table on 19 points, with the away side one point further back in sixth, behind Roma's big rivals Lazio on goal difference.

Match Preview

Paulo Fonseca pictured as Roma boss in August 2019© Reuters

Goals from Nicolo Zaniolo, Chris Smalling, Justin Kluivert and Aleksandar Kolarov helped Roma to a 4-0 win away to Udinese on Wednesday, despite them being reduced to 10 men in the first half.

Fonseca's side have lost just once in the league this season and despite their ongoing midfield injury crisis, they are consistently finding a way to keep games tight and force opportunities.

One of the Giallorossi's particular strengths has been their prowess at set pieces, with Smalling, Edin Dzeko and Gianluca Mancini providing useful outlets, both offensively and defensively.

Interestingly, none of the last six meetings between these sides has been won by the home side.

Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti on October 30, 2019© Reuters

Napoli had a tougher time of it in the week, being held to a 2-2 draw by Atalanta despite taking the lead on two occasions.

One bright spark from that game was Arkadiusz Milik, who grabbed his fourth of the season and looks to be finding his best form again after his recent injury troubles.

Carlo Ancelotti's side have been good themselves at set pieces this year but they have also been too open defensively and too easy to create chances against, something that will be a boon to Roma's talented attacking players.

Napoli will be without their manager for this game though, after he was sent off on Wednesday evening.

Saturday's game is likely to be a high tempo affair given the desire of both sides to play possession football, although Napoli are likely to have the lion's share in this game given Roma's well-publicised injury issues.

Roma recent form: LWDDWW
Roma recent form (all competitions): DDDDWW

Napoli recent form: LWDWDD
Napoli recent form (all competitions): DDWWDD

Team News

Henrikh Mkhitaryan warms up for Roma on September 19, 2019© Reuters

Roma are set to be without as many as eight first team players for Saturday's game, meaning that Fonseca will once again have to be very careful with how he sets his team out.

Federico Fazio is suspended following his red card against Udinese, while Bryan Cristante, Nikola Kalinic, Amadou Diawara, Lorenzo Pellegrini and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are all ruled out with injuries.

Chelsea loanee Davide Zappacosta is also a doubt for the Giallorossi, as is Devid Eugene Bouah.

Napoli have almost a full complement of players to choose from, although they are without Elseid Hysaj, Allan and Kostas Manolas.

Ancelotti is likely to make some changes to his side, with one eye on their Champions League home tie against Red Bull Salzburg on Tuesday evening.

Roma possible starting lineup:
Lopez; Santon, Smalling, Cetin, Kolarov; Veretout, Mancini; Zaniolo, Pastore, Kluivert; Dzeko

Napoli possible starting lineup:
Meret; Di Lorenzo, Koulibaly, Maksimovic, Rui; Callejon, Zielinski, Ruiz, Lozano; Milik, Mertens

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We say: Roma 2-2 Napoli

On paper these two sides are very evenly matched and that is likely to play out on Saturday, with the home side probably doing enough to secure a point.

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Friday's key events

· The athletics schedule begins, with 100m sprinter Dina Asher-Smith among the names in action on the opening day. The men's 10,000m final concludes the action, with Team GB's Sam Atkin and Marc Scott taking part in the absence of 2012 and 2016 champion Sir Mo Farah (1am-2.30pm)

· Victoria Thornley is Team GB's representative in the women's single sculls final (1.33am)
· Great Britain will be going for gold in the men's eight final (2.25am)

· Team GB duo Molly Renshaw and Abbie Wood take part in the women's 200m breaststroke final, but new Olympic record-holder Tatjana Schoenmaker of South Africa is the hot favourite (2.41am)
· Luke Greenbank has very realistic ambitions of picking up a medal in the men's 200m backstroke final (2.50am)
· There is also British representation in the women's 100m freestyle final, although any medal for Anna Hopkin would be a surprise (2.59am)
· With one gold and one silver already under his belt at these Games, Duncan Scott goes again in the men's 200m individual medley final (3.16am)

· Bryony Page will be looking to repeat her 2016 heroics in the women's event (5am-7.30pm)

· Bradley Forbes-Cryans will be looking to emulate Rio gold medallist Joe Clarke in the men's kayak event (6am-9am)

· The women's tournament enters the quarter-finals, with Great Britain facing Australia at the Ibaraki Kashima Stadium (10am)

> Today's schedule in full
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