Just like in Turin, Milan and Genoa, the Rome derby is always a hotly-contested fixture in Italy, the colours and passion shown by both sets of supporters creating a genuine spectacle for those who tune in. The fixture needs nothing else to build up its significance. However, Saturday’s match between both capital clubs will be fascinating indeed.
Lazio – the nominal away side on this occasion at the Stadio Olimpico – are seemingly in better shape than their neighbours, currently sitting third in the league with 12 points gained from their opening six matches. Their only two defeats have been suffered at the hands of Juventus and Napoli, the Biancocelesti victims of the toughest possible opening two fixtures in 2018/19.
They ground out a result versus Udinese in midweek, seeing out a 2-1 victory despite a late onslaught from their Friulian opponents. Roma also took three points in Serie A on Wednesday night thanks to a 4-0 battering of Frosinone, their Coach Eusebio Di Francesco surely relieved as the pressure on his current position was slightly eased.
That victory came after a disastrous result away to Bologna last Sunday, the 2-0 defeat ensuring that the Giallorossi had only taken five points from as many matches since the season began. Furthermore, Bologna had failed to score in each of their opening four games, and as they broke the deadlock twice, the opposition guaranteed that all post-match talk would surround EDF.
Even a defiant midweek win won’t let the boss off the hook completely, and the last thing he will want is to face a derby match this weekend. That said, a win would go a long way to ensuring he will be allowed to continue in the Roma dugout for a while longer at least.
The old adage that anything can happen during derby matches certainly seems to be the case between these two sides, as recent results have been fairly even. Of the last six, wins go 3-2 in favour of the Giallorossi, with one 0-0 draw at the tail end of last season. Goals were eight apiece in those aforementioned encounters, leaving current form the best indicator for football betting fans.
That firmly points in the direction of Lazio after their sound start to the Serie A campaign, the Biancocelesti having accumulated an extra four points over just six matches so far and victorious in their last four consecutive matches. Decent odds of 9/5 can be found for this outcome via 888Sport, a bet well worth considering with Roma still in hot water.
The aforementioned 0-0 draw between this pair looks to have been an anomaly, as statistics show that Roma have seen over 2.5 goals in all three of their last home games versus their derby rivals. The Giallorossi have no problems finding the back of the net, having outscored Lazio by two goals this season, however their tally of 11 scored is very much negated by a whopping nine conceded by a very leaky backline.
Indeed, there have been over 2.5 goals scored in no less than five of Roma’s last six home matches, with Eusebio Di Francesco’s men having scored at least two in all of those fixtures. With this in mind, Karamba offer 20/33 on a total of over 2.5 strikes, something which would certainly be worthwhile backing here.
After having struggled to settle elsewhere in the past, striker Ciro Immobile has found the ideal club for himself at Lazio and has been thriving in the capital since his arrival in summer 2016. Last term he was Serie A joint top-scorer along with Inter’s Mauro Icardi, and the 28-year-old has started as he has meant to go on again this season, already having netted three times in the league alone.
This included a brace in last weekend’s fixture versus Genoa, and therefore we are looking at a man who is truly on top form once again.
Karamba have some good options for the 28-year-old hitman for this important derby clash, the bookmaker offering 23/20 for Immobile to score first or last, while odds of 7/2 to score two or more and 12/1 to complete a hat-trick are tempting indeed.
Of course, any forward wants to grab the headlines in a highly-charged derby fixture like this one, and placing a bet on Immobile – who has the likes of Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Luis Alberto backing him up – could pay off in style.