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This match was originally scheduled for the same week as the supercoppa and it is being played on February 8th instead. That same supercoppa win versus Juventus is now close to a distant memory and it is very much going to be the highlight of the season. The team has struggled since and even fallen out of the European spots in the Serie A standings.
The latest set back came against Sampdoria, the injury riddled squad forced Montella into somewhat creative changes with Kucka lining up as right back – though he was in reality playing as a right midfield. The 0-1 end result was both unlucky and poor.
Abate and Calabria are near fit and the line up will look more normal versus Bologna. Meeting a team that was crushed 1-7 (versus Napoli) during the weekend makes this a required win. The central defenders will remain Paletta and Romagnoli. Locatelli was always likely to return to the starting line up and in any event Sosa received two yellows versus Sampdoria and is not available. Pasalic and Kucka are set to be the other midfielders. Bacca, who once again showed angered at getting subbed, will start in between Suso and Deulofeu to retain the usual 4-3-3.
We may be approaching the conclusion of the Chinese takeover saga with more reports that the deal will close before long. The future may just be brighter but this season may end just as poorly as recent ones, on paper at least.