MX23RW : Tuesday, July 27 16:35:42| >> :600:1306390:1306390:
Jan 30, 2021 at 5pm UK at Stadio Luigi Ferraris

Thorsby (24'), Ekdal (30'), Jankto (30'), Damsgaard (87')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Chiesa (20'), A (90+1')
Bentancur (37'), Bernardeschi (89')

Preview: Sampdoria vs. Juventus - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Saturday's Serie A clash between Sampdoria and Juventus, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Three wins in a week have rejuvenated defending champions Juventus going into the second half of the Serie A season, as they prepare to meet Sampdoria at Stadio Luigi Ferraris on Saturday evening.

Claudio Ranieri's home team, meanwhile, await the champions' arrival having put together rare back-to-back victories of their own to move into the top half of the table.

Match preview

Juventus' Weston McKennie celebrates scoring their second goal on January 24, 2021© Reuters

Rebounding immediately from their Derby d'Italia defeat to Inter, Supercoppa Italiana success against Napoli gave under-pressure Juventus coach Andrea Pirlo his first silverware since taking charge.

His team then followed that up with a league win over Bologna - goals coming from midfielders Arthur and Weston McKennie - to narrow the gap on the league-leading Milan clubs in Serie A.

On Wednesday, Pirlo's much-changed XI secured progress to a tantalising Coppa Italia semi-final against Inter - the first leg of which is scheduled for next week - by sweeping aside Serie B SPAL 4-0 at the Allianz Stadium.

Taking the opportunity to rest experienced squad members Cristiano Ronaldo, Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci among others, Juve were in control throughout against Pasquale Marino's men.

Away from Turin, however, the Bianconeri's form has wavered so far - registering just four wins and as many draws on the road compared to six successes at home.

Adding a win to that record on Saturday would allow Juventus to at least temporarily take third place with a game in hand on most other sides in a seemingly still open Scudetto race.

Sampdoria manager Claudio Ranieri pictured in January 2021© Reuters

Successive wins against strugglers Parma and Udinese have helped Sampdoria into 10th place in the Serie A standings at the halfway stage, with the wildly inconsistent Blucerchiati remaining strangers to the draw - with eight wins and nine losses coming in a refreshingly entertaining first phase of the campaign.

Samp have in fact won their last two matches without conceding a goal, with the last time they managed that seemingly modest feat coming back in September 2018 - albeit their most recent opponents were considerably less fearsome than this week's.

Three home wins in their last five for Claudio Ranieri's men also included bringing Inter's long winning streak to an end earlier this month and should provide them with a further measure of confidence ahead of Juve's visit.

After his first-half goal at the Tardini, Senegalese striker Keita Balde has now scored 14 goals in his last 16 Serie A starts and since his return to full fitness, Ranieri has had a plethora of attacking options from which to choose - including evergreen Azzurri stars Antonio Candreva and Fabio Quagliarella, plus new signing Ernesto Torregrossa.

Coming face-to-face with the Old Lady's wily defensive masters at Marassi should prove a firm test of Samp's new-found offensive credentials and promises to provide an entertaining match-up.

Sampdoria Serie A form: LLWLWW

Juventus Serie A form: LWWWLW
Juventus form (all competitions): WWLWWW

Team News

Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo pictured on January 24, 2021© Reuters

Top scorer Cristiano Ronaldo will return to the Juventus starting side after benefiting from a rare rest in midweek, along with goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny and defensive mainstay Giorgio Chiellini. Both Juan Cuadrado and Federico Chiesa are also expected to feature on the flanks in Pirlo's flexible 4-4-2.

Though Rodrigo Bentancur is a minor doubt due to a foot injury, only suspended Dejan Kulusevski and injured Paulo Dybala are definitely unavailable for the Bianconeri, so Alvaro Morata will continue in attack.

Sampdoria are also in collective good health ahead of the game and with only long-term absentee Manolo Gabbiadini still unavailable, Claudio Ranieri could opt to retain Keita Balde alongside Fabio Quagliarella in attack.

It is also expected that Jakub Jankto will return to the left wing in order to counter Cuadrado's characteristic surges, replacing the more attack-minded Gaston Ramirez.

Despite showing well of late, Adrien Silva may drop out of midfield, as reliable campaigner Albin Ekdal is set to reprise his successful engine room partnership with Morten Thorsby.

Sampdoria possible starting lineup:
Audero; Bereszynski, Yoshida, Colley, Augello; Candreva, Ekdal, Thorsby, Jankto; Keita, Quagliarella

Juventus possible starting lineup:
Szczesny; Danilo, De Ligt, Bonucci, Cuadrado; McKennie, Bentancur, Rabiot, Chiesa; Morata, Ronaldo

SM words green background

We say: Sampdoria 1-1 Juventus

Surely Serie A's most hard-to-predict side, Sampdoria have rarely drawn this term but would gratefully receive a point against Juventus this weekend.

On the other hand, Juve have tied too many league games so far and may again be held by an improving and increasingly confident outfit - one featuring several men with sufficient experience to frustrate the champions.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting an away win 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.Away Win:data

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United StatesUnited States98825
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Great BritainGreat Britain45413
Today's Olympic highlights header

Wednesday's key events

· Team GB have dominated the men's coxless fours in recent Olympics, winning on each of the last five occasions, but this year they face some stiff competition. They are one of four rowing medal contenders for Great Britain today (2.10am)

· Katie Ledecky and Ariarne Titmus face off again in the women's 200m freestyle final, with the latter having already come out on top in the 400m event (2.41am)
· Team GB's Abbie Wood is among the medal contenders in the women's 200m individual medley final, while teammate Alicia Wilson will also take part. USA's Kate Douglass was the fastest qualifier, while world and Olympic record holder Katinka Hosszu is also involved (3.45am)
· Katie Ledecky could make it two golds in one morning as she goes into the 1500m freestyle final as heavy favourite, having broken the Olympic record in qualifying (3.54am)
· Team GB were by far the fastest qualifiers for the men's 4x200m freestyle relay final and will therefore be favourites for another gold in the pool (4.26am)

· Team GB take on New Zealand in the first men's semi-final, having been beaten by reigning champions Fiji but then come from behind to overcome USA on day two (3am)
· The sevens gold medal match takes place at Tokyo Stadium, with the winner of Great Britain vs. New Zealand taking on either Argentina or Fiji (10am)

· Joe Fraser and James Hall compete for Team GB in the men's all-around final (3.15am-6.10am)

· Anna Shackley will take part in the women's road time trial (from 3.30am)
· Geraint Thomas and Tao Geoghegan Hart have medal ambitions for Great Britain in the men's road time trial, although both will need to recover from the crash they suffered on Saturday (6am)

· Jack Laugher bids to retain his men's 3m synchro diving title alongside new partner Daniel Goodfellow (7am)

· Charlotte Dujardin will look to add to her already legendary status with a third successive Olympic individual dressage title (9.30am-1.25pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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