Our prediction for this Serie A match:
Sassuolo will be aiming to put an end to their four-game winless run in the Serie A when they host Spezia at their Mapei Stadium – Citta del Tricolore on Matchday 21. The Neroverdi suffered a dip in form in the national championship, but they will not have a better chance than this to get back on course. Lopez is banned for the match, while Romagna and Bourabia remain in the recovery room. Defrel is widely expected to return to the starting XI.
Spezia, on the other hand, aim to make amends for back-to-back losses to Roma and Udinese. The Bianconeri are fighting hard to survive in the Serie A, but seeing that Sassuolo are a real force to be reckoned with at home, we predict that the visitors are going to return to Liguria empty-handed. In the first half of the season Sassuolo rolled over Spezia 4-1, which is yet another reason why home win should be considered. Both Pobega and Saponara are banned for the visitors.
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.