Inter

Inter’s title race is effectively run (they have a 5% chance), the scudetto run-in is now between Lazio and Juventus. With that in mind, I don’t think we see anywhere close to the intensity we saw earlier in the season.

  • Only 5 of Inter’s last 20 home matches in Serie A have been settled by them winning by a 2+ goal margin
  • This season they have only covered the spread at home against Lecce, Genoa, and Milan. Only the Genoa (17th) and Lecce (18th) results were truly dominant. Against Milan, they were second best for large periods and as the xG total suggests, a draw might have been a fairer result (xG 1.71-2.42 in AC Milan’s favour)
  • Inter beat Sampdoria 2-1 earlier this season (xG 1.31-2.17) but this was before Ranieri was hired.
  • Inter will be without their best CM for this match (Brozovic) as well as Stefano Sensi. Christian Eriksen who hasn’t found his feet yet is set to start.
  • Although we’re looking at small sample sizes, Inter’s goals per 90 average drops quite a bit with Eriksen on the pitch. I’m sure this will change as he settles into the new league but we can’t ignore what we’ve seen so far.
  • In the one game we seen from Inter since the restart (Coppa Italia semi-final) we saw just two attempts inside Napoli’s box. Eriksen’s goal in that game was a bit of a fluke coming directly from a corner. See here

Sampdoria

Sampdoria aren’t free of danger yet, they still have a chance to get relegated (~15%) this season so we should expect Ranieri to keep things right in this match.

  • Even with the Eusebio Di Francesco shit show (6 losses from 7 at the start of the season) Sampdoria have the 6th best xGA(expected goals against) score in the league which is a testament to what Ranieri has been able to achieve since coming in.
  • If we just look at their defence away from home, they rank 4th best allowing even fewer chances than Juventus
  • Sampdoria have been beaten by a 2 or more goal margin three times this season under Ranieri. These losses came to Lazio, Fiorentina, and Napoli. Let’s look closer at these results
  • 5-1 home loss to Lazio, Lazio were 2-0 up inside 15 mins and Sampdoria’s heads dropped. As the xG suggests this was a dominant display from Italy’s 2nd best-attacking side.
  • 5-1 loss to Fiorentina, this was a crazy game with early Red cards on both sides but the scoreline isn’t as bad as the result indicates. Fiorentina won the xG 3.04-2.03 but if we take away Fiorentina’s penalty this was a very close match
  • 4-2 loss to Napoli, Again this was a game where the scoreline doesn’t reflect what happened on the pitch (xG 1.73-1.62 in Samp’s favour) Napoli scored all three of their half-chances inside the box as well as Dries Mertens effort from 30/40 yards out (keeper came off his line)
  • As you can see above, from Ranieri’s 18 league games in charge they were only truly blown out once. One terrible result isn’t enough to put me off siding with Sampdoria. Factoring the long layoff from lockdown and the diminished HFA (Home field advantage) this is the value side.
Sampdoria +1.5 Asian Handicap at 1.77 with Unibet - 1.5 units