Merih Demiral

Atalanta’s Merih Demiral reacts to fans after Atalanta’s Jeremie Boga scored during the Europa League Round of 16, second leg, soccer match between Bayer Leverkusen and Atalanta Bergamo at the BayArena in Leverkusen, Germany, Thursday, March 17, 2022. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

  • Atalanta hosts Napoli in the 31st round of Serie A play on Sunday, April 3rd at 9am ET
  • Napoli holds second place in the Serie A table, while Atalanta sit back in fifth place with a game in hand
  • Get the odds, analysis, and betting prediction for Atalanta vs Napoli below

Finally, the international break is over and fans can rejoice at the return of Serie A football, with the run-in quickly approaching. While AC Milan can see the Scudetto’s light at the end of the tunnel, Gli Azzurri from Naples lurks only three points behind. Presently, Napoli has the third-best odds to win Serie A at +600.

Although, this weekend, Napoli has the tough task of playing Atalanta away from home. While Atalanta sits twelve points back in fifth place, they have their own motivation for three points on Sunday. Gian Piero Gasperini’s squad is desperately fighting for more Champions League football next season.

Despite them having a game in hand on fourth-place Juventus, they still trail by nine points, which is massive at this stage in the competition. Basically, Atalanta needs to be perfect from here on out and this match against Napoli is their first major test.

Atalanta vs Napoli Odds

Matchup Spread Moneyline Total
Atalanta vs Napoli ATL -0.5 (+133) | NAP +0.5 (-159) ATL +133 | NAP +210 | DRAW +230 Ov 2.5 (-118) | Un 2.5 (-105)

Odds as of Apr 1st at Barstool Sportsbook

If you’re new to betting on this sport, then take a look at our How to Bet on Soccer page.

Overall, the moneyline odds are surprisingly in Atalanta’s favor at +133, despite their lower position in the table. Nonetheless, Atalanta has won their last three head-to-head meetings in all competitions and Napoli has not won away at the Gewiss Stadium since 2018.

Napoli to be Without Key Striker Victor Osimhen

Next, the odds begin to make even more sense when you realize Victor Osimhen will be sitting out of this game due to suspension. The Nigerian has been on an absolute tear since joining I Partenopei in 2020 from French outfit, Lille. In fact, his eleven domestic goals this season make him one of the ten most prolific attackers in Italy’s top flight.

Note, Osimhen has only actually played in twenty games, giving him a non-penalty XG mark of 0.78 per 90 minutes. That metric ranks in the 98th percentile for forwards in Europe’s top five leagues. Therefore, just swooping him out of the lineup for a match can cause massive effects throughout the squad.

Atalanta vs Napoli Statistics

1.76 Goals per game 1.77
1.62 Expected goals per game 1.56
1.07 Goals allowed per game 0.73
1.10 Expected goals allowed per game 0.74
54.3% Possession % 59.5%
81.6% Passing Accuracy % 87.3%
14.8 Shots per game 15.9

As a result, Dries Mertens is the most likely candidate to start up top for Luciano Spalletti’s side. Now, the combination of Lorenzo Insigne, Matteo Politano and Mertens is nothing to shake a stick at. But, the proof is in the pudding; Napoli are 5-3-3 with Mertens in the starting lineup, and 14-4-2 without him. Respectively, their win percentage increased to over 20% with him starting on the bench.

Also, Napoli will certainly be without the likes of Piotr Zielinski and Amir Rrahmani due to injury and suspension. While they put together two consecutive 2-1 victories in Serie A before the break, the chips are surely stacked against them.

La Dea Look to Continue Defensive Brilliance

Conversely, Atalanta has their own injury problems to deal with. On Sunday, it looks like they will again be without Duvan Zapata and captain Rafael Toloi, two incredibly major absences.

However, in recent games, they have been performing quite well without their attacking leader. All in all, this is a credit to their defense considering they have only scored five goals in their last five games, going 3-1-1. Over that same span they have only conceded three times; once to a tricky Roma side and twice to Bayer Leverkusen in the Europa League.

Additionally, they have kept three clean sheets on the bounce. More specifically, Merih Demiral has been an absolute Rolls-Royce in defense. The 24-year-old puts up 2.06 tackles, 3.17 interceptions and 4.72 aerial wins per ninety minutes, which is absolutely ridiculous. Personally, it is hard to see any Napoli attacker getting by him on his current form.

Atalanta vs Napoli Best Bet

Overall, the best bet in this match is the Atalanta moneyline with odds of +133. These plus odds have great value given Osimhen’s absence and their recent head-to-head performances.

Pick: Atalanta ML (+133)

Author Image


Josh Ricker

NBA
MLB
Soccer
Sports Writer

NBA
MLB
Soccer





Source link