This season is a lost cause for Chievo Verona. Through 15 matches, Chievo have yet to record a victory and they are a virtual lock to be relegated. They were docked three points at the beginning of the season because of poor accounting, and that leaves them with just three points to their name after an 0-6-9 start. Chievo are decent underdogs coming into their match with SPAL this weekend, and if they are to make an incredible run to salvage their season it needs to start here.
Don't miss the Italian Serie A action from Stadio Paolo Mazza in Ferrara, Italy at 6:30 a.m. ET on Sunday, December 16, 2018. Catch every moment of the match live on ESPN2.
Italian Serie A Betting Odds at BookMaker.eu
Over/Under 2 and 2.5
SPAL have been one of the most incredible teams to follow over the last 15 years. They have had to declare bankruptcy and re-form twice in that span, but their run over the past six years has been inspiring, and this is their second straight year in Serie A after a nearly five-decade absence. SPAL started the season strong this year, but they have seen their fortunes fade. They haven’t won a match since shocking Roma in the Stadio Olimpico in late November, and they have just three points from their last seven games.
There has been good news if you’re a Chievo fan. Although the club has yet to win a match, they have earned four consecutive draws and that has given the team something to rally around. These weren’t just draws against lesser clubs either. One of the draws came on the road against second-place Napoli, and the other was against Lazio. At this point of the campaign, it’s about the little things for Chievo, and that at least gives them something to cheer.
SPAL have been very fortunate on the injury front this year. Gigantic goalkeeper Demba Thiam is the one player listed on their injury report, and he is a long-term prospect anyways. He is raw, but his 6’8 height and agility make him an alluring player to train.
Their opponents are not so fortunate. Chievo won’t have right back Fabio Depaoli due to yellow card accumulation, and center back Nenad Tomovic is expected to miss a few more weeks because of a thigh injury. The club is hopeful that reserve goalkeeper Andrea Seculin can return soon, and he is questionable to be fit enough for a selection.
Player to Watch
Manuel Lazzari has come up through the ranks with SPAL over the last few seasons, but he might be set to leave over the winter. The 23-year-old has caught the eye of many clubs with his speed, and SPAL might be offered too much to turn down. Lazzari has been the team’s top playmaker this season. He leads the team with five assists, and because he is one of the team’s lone talents, he has been given license to freewheel in the midfield. That has helped the team find a spark, and he will look to create here.
Serie A Prop Bet – Over 2.5 goals at +131
I see Lazzari opening things up for SPAL, and I think Chievo are bound to follow suit. At this stage of the season, they need wins and not draws, and this is a team they can potentially beat. This game will have more chances than it would have seen earlier in the year due to those circumstances.
Free Soccer Betting Pick
Homefield advantage will be too much for Chievo to overcome here. They will threaten to take a result away from SPAL, but the hosts will be too much in the end. This will be a close one though.
Italian Serie A Odds: SPAL 2, Chievo Verona 1
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