Our prediction for this Serie A match:
After dropping two points in a 2-2 draw with Salernitana, Sassuolo will look to return to winning ways when they take on Spezia on Friday evening. The Neroverdi are eight points behind the Conference League berth, meaning that this has to go down as a must-win game for the home side. All Rogerio, Toljan, and Djuricic remain in the recovery room, while Raspadori is banned for the match.
The Bianconeri, on the other hand, desperately needed a win against Cagliari, and they managed to get one, with the team putting an end to their dreadful losing run. Spezia, though, are not regarded as good travelers, and seeing that Sassuolo are eager to represent Italy in European competitions next term, home win should be considered. Both Leo’ Sena and Sala are sidelined with injuries for the visiting side.
Highlighted Player (Vlad Chiriches):
Vlad Iulian Churches had an unusual path to the biggest stage, spending some time at the Benfica youth academy before returning to Romania to start his professional career at International. The central defender arrived to Steaua Bucuresti via Pandurii Targu Jiu and he needed just a year and a half to secure a big club move.
After snubbing a number of offers from Italian Serie A, Chiriches joined Tottenham Hotspur in the summer of 2013, becoming Steaua’s record transfer in the process. However, the Romania international did not enjoy the best of starts to his career in England and he was sold to Napoli after two somewhat disappointing seasons at White Hart Lane.
Chiriches has struggled for playing time at Stadio San Paolo as well, and he will probably need to play on regular basis if he is to realise his full potential. Meanwhile, the powerful defender remains an important member of the Romania national team, having earned more than 40 caps for the Tricolorii since making his debut in 2011.
Highlighted Team (Spezia):
Spezia is a professional Italian club based in Spezia, Liguria. The Bianconeri secured promotion to the Serie A in the 2019/20 season, with the team beating Frosinone in the Serie B playoffs final. Spezia are well known for their black and white home jerseys, and black is the dominant colour of their away kit.
The club’s home ground Stadio Alberto Picco has the capacity of 10,336 people. The venue was opened back in 1919, with architect Gregotti being in charge of the project. In 2002 the club chiefs decided to reach an agreement with Inter which saw Spezia become Inter’s feeder club.
As a result, the likes of Goran Pandev, Aco Stojkov, and Alex Cordaz joined the Bianconeri in the first season. Spezia then suffered a bankruptcy, but in 2008 they were re-founded. In the 2020/21 season the Bianconeri will compete in the Italian elite division for the first time ever.