MX23RW : Thursday, July 29 15:33:38| >> :600:322471:322471:
Dec 11, 2020 at 7.45pm UK at Stadio Alberto Braglia
Berardi (8' pen.)
Berardi (40'), Ayhan (86')
Haraslin (49')
FT(HT: 1-0)

Hetemaj (9'), Ionita (23'), Barba (69'), Dabo (87')

Preview: Sassuolo vs. Benevento - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole previews Friday's Serie A clash between Sassuolo and Benevento, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

Sassuolo welcome Benevento to the Mapei Stadium on Friday evening with the opportunity to move back into second place in the Serie A standings.

Having put together a three-match undefeated streak, Benevento head into this fixture sitting five points clear of the relegation zone.

Match preview

Sassuolo coach Roberto De Zerbi pictured on November 22, 2020© Reuters

Having previously enjoyed a storming start to the campaign, claiming just one point from a possible six has the potential to derail Sassuolo's ambitions to become a mainstay in the top six.

However, bouncing back from a 3-0 defeat at home to Inter Milan with a goalless draw at Roma will be regarded as a positive by Roberto De Zerbi, who continues to work wonders at the Mapei Stadium.

Sassuolo have a tough-looking schedule at the turn of the year with AC Milan, Atalanta BC and Juventus all to come in the space of five games, but the greater pressure will be on their opponents if they can take advantage of their upcoming meetings with Benevento and Sampdoria.

Despite going two games without success, I Neroverdi remain in fifth position, and Friday's fixture provides them with a chance to move closer to leaders AC Milan.

While just two goals have been netted in four outings, De Zerbi's side remain with the fourth-best attacking record in Italy's top flight.

Competing in just their second ever Serie A campaign, everyone associated with Benevento will be delighted with occupying 13th spot in the table.

Four consecutive defeats had led to the newcomers dropping down the standings, but Filippo Inzaghi's side have been excellent since the November international break.

A narrow win at Fiorentina has been followed by draws against Juventus and Parma, leaving Gli Stregoni just three points adrift of ninth-placed Atalanta.

Although Inzaghi will be far more interested in maintaining a cushion above the relegation zone, victory on Friday would give Benevento plenty of reasons to aim higher over the coming months.

Sassuolo Serie A form: DWDWLD

Benevento Serie A form: LLLWDD
Benevento form (all competitions): LLLWDD

Team News

Benevento manager Filippo Inzaghi pictured in September 2020© Reuters

Inzaghi will be able to call upon Pasquale Schiattarella with the veteran defender having served his one-match ban.

However, Inzaghi may decide to go with the team which claimed a goalless draw at Parma last weekend.

De Zerbi could opt to hand a recall to Giacomo Raspadori, potentially at the expense of Maxime Lopez.

Barring any late fitness issues, the remainder of the starting XI could remain the same with Jeremie Boga keeping out Hamed Junior Traore.

Sassuolo possible starting lineup:
Pegolo; Ayhan, Santos, Ferrari, Rogerio; Obiang, Locatelli; Berardi, Djuricic, Boga; Raspadori

Benevento possible starting lineup:
Montipo; Letizia, Tuia, Glik, Barba; Hetemaj, Ionita, Improta; Insigne, Lapadula, Caprari

SM words green background

We say: Sassuolo 2-1 Benevento

Despite the difference in league placings, this fixture should be far closer than many people are anticipating. Nevertheless, Sassuolo will be motivated to get back on track, and the home side could edge out their in-form opponents by a narrow margin.

Top betting tip

Our expert tipster partners at are predicting a double chance bet on a home win or draw 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.Home/Draw:data

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Juventus manager Andrea Pirlo pictured on November 4, 2020
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Thursday's key events

· Comeback queen and super-mum Helen Glover goes for her third Olympic gold alongside Polly Swann in the women's pair final (1.30am)
· There is also a medal on offer for GB pair Emily Craig and Imogen Grant in the lightweight women's double scull final (2.10am)

· As second-fastest qualifier for the final, Team GB's James Wilby is among the medal contenders in the men's 200m breaststroke (2.44am)
· Alys Thomas takes part in the women's 200m butterfly final, although he faces a difficult task to challenge for the medals (3.28am)
· Caeleb Dressel of the USA has been touted by some as the successor to Michael Phelps, and he has the chance to notch up a fourth Olympic gold in the men's 100m freestyle final (3.37am)

· After Team GB's men narrowly missed out on a medal, the women get their campaign underway against the Russian Olympic Committee (3am) and New Zealand (10.30am)

· It is a Great Britain vs. Netherlands double-header, with the men up first in Pool B (4.15am)
· Most eyes will be on the women's showdown between the two nations, though, as Netherlands - the world's best team - look to gain revenge on GB for defeat in the 2016 Olympic final (11am)

· Mallory Franklin takes part in the women's canoe semi-final, and will hope to do enough to qualify for the final later in the day (6am-8.45am)

· With Simone Biles now out of the women's all-around final, the competition has been blown wide open. Team GB twins Jessica and Jennifer Gadirova are among those taking part (11.50am-2.05pm)

> Today's schedule in full
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