MX23RW : Friday, January 22 17:43:01| >> :60:3204:3204:
Jan 16, 2021 at 7.45pm UK at Stadio Luigi Ferraris
Candreva (67' pen.), Torregrossa (81')
Askildsen (86')
FT(HT: 0-0)
De Paul (55')
Zeegelaar (62')

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

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

Claudio Ranieri's inconsistent Sampdoria meet out-of-form Udinese on Saturday, after both sides suffered dispiriting defeats last time out.

Mid-table Samp's only win in four surprisingly came against title-chasing Inter Milan, while the Zebrette have now gone without success since the middle of last month.

Match preview

Inter Milan's Romelu Lukaku in action with Sampdoria's Omar Colley in September 2019© Reuters

During a week of potentially canny moves in terms of recruitment and retainment - with striker Ernesto Torregrossa arriving from Brescia to take the treasured number nine shirt and coveted defender Omar Colley signing a fresh deal until 2025 - Sampdoria have also been recovering from defeat to top-flight rookies Spezia on Monday.

That 2-1 loss in a closely-contested Ligurian derby undermined any sense of progress from turning over Milanese giants Inter just a few days before, leaving the Blucerchiati 11th in the Serie A standings - just three points ahead of their modest local rivals.

Out of character with Ranieri's reputation, his current Samp side play a relatively progressive style of football - leading to a record of 28 goals conceded so far this season, with 26 scored.

Torregrossa's arrival should help forwards Fabio Quagliarella - now feeling the pace as he advances to 'veteran' status - and Keita Balde to keep the goals flowing at Marassi.

Furthermore, evergreen Antonio Candreva, on loan from Inter, has stepped up his game after an unseemly falling-out with Ranieri was resolved last month and he has found the target twice and provided one assist so far this year.

Sampdoria have won all of their last three Serie A encounters with Saturday's visitors Udinese, scoring at least two goals on each occasion, so recent precedent is in their favour as they seek to break into the top half of the table.

Udinese's Kevin Lasagna celebrates scoring their first goal with teammates on January 10, 2021© Reuters

Udinese's head coach Luca Gotti believes that his job is not under threat in the wake of a dismal run during the fixture-packed past 30 days, but his team lost for a third time in four at home to Napoli last week.

The Friulani conceded a late Tiemoue Bakayoko goal at the Dacia Arena to fall to another - albeit perhaps undeserved - defeat, with goalkeeper Juan Musso excelling during an open affair.

Now in 15th place, only four points above Torino in the drop zone, Gotti must find a way to reconfigure his plethora of attacking options. Having mixed and matched a wide range of alternatives all season long, none have truly convinced for an outfit with just 18 goals registered to date - one of the least effective attacks in the league.

In their last five games on the road, the Bianconeri's only defeat came against Juventus, so they will retain some hope when heading to Genoa this weekend.

Visiting Samp at Stadio Luigi Ferraris, though, has become one of the club's least-favoured journeys in recent times, as the last Udinese league win away to the Blucerchiati was back in December 2012 - their only victory in the corresponding fixture for 15 league matches.

Sampdoria Serie A form: WWLLWL

Udinese Serie A form: DDLLDL

Team News

Sampdoria manager Claudio Ranieri pictured in October 2020© Reuters

Once more, Claudio Ranieri will have the luxury of a nearly full-strength squad, with only long-term absentees Alex Ferrari and Manolo Gabbiadini out injured, though Jakub Jankto is suspended - young winger Mikkel Damsgaard should switch to the flank as cover.

Albin Ekdal and Morten Thorsby form a solid midfield pair in Ranieri's 4-4-2, with Fabio Quagliarella set to come back into the starting XI up front alongside the mercurial Keita Balde.

Visiting coach Luca Gotti has been dealing with an almost interminable injury list throughout the campaign and - in addition to Mato Jajalo and Ignacio Pussetto, who are both out for the season - Udinese will be without Stefano Okaka, Fernando Forestieri, Sebastian Prodl and Bram Nuytinck.

Gerard Deulofeu is available and should start on the bench, with Roberto Pereyra and star man Rodrigo De Paul playing in support of lone striker Kevin Lasagna.

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

Udinese possible starting lineup:
Musso; Bonifazi, Becao, Samir; Larsen, De Paul, Arslan, Mandragora, Zeegelaar; Pereyra; Lasagna

SM words green background

We say: Sampdoria 1-1 Udinese

Predicting the outcome of a Sampdoria fixture this season can be fiendishly difficult, as they have been such an unpredictable side.

Many would expect them to bounce back from defeat to surprise package Spezia and see off Udinese on Saturday, but the Zebrette could grind out another away point, as they have drawn several games on the road.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at 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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Udinese midfielder Rodrigo De Paul pictured in July 2020
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