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Coppa Italia: Another lively start for Roma against Inter

Injury doubt Mirko Vucinic was Juventus' quarter-final hero

"By their elevated standards, Juve had undergone a slight wobble, drawing and losing in the league before returning to winning ways against Udinese in emphatic style on Saturday with a thumping 4-0 victory."
Best Bet: Back Juventus to win @ 1.654/6

Christian Crowther previews the televised Coppa Italia semi-final clashes and offers up a few bets for each...

Juventus v Lazio, Tuesday 19:45, ESPN, Match Odds: Juventus 1.654/6, Lazio 6.411/2, The Draw 43/1
With the wheat sorted from the chaff in the Italian Cup, it's left to two of Serie A's top three to slug it out in the first of the semi-final first legs in Turin. And after extending their lead over Rome-based rivals Lazio to five points at the weekend, you'd have to fancy the Old Lady to have the upper hand in this one. By their elevated standards, Juve had undergone a slight wobble, drawing and losing in the league before returning to winning ways against Udinese in emphatic style on Saturday with a thumping 4-0 victory. Among the Bianconeri scorers was Mirko Vucinic, the extra-time hero of the last round who is expected to start on the bench because of his fitness problems but has regularly proven capable of changing a game as a substitute. Though unbeaten in 15 matches, Lazio succumbed to a 2-2 weekend draw at relegation-threatened Palermo. An injury to Lazio's leading scorer Miroslav Klose kept the German out of that game and his absence is sure to be felt in Turin too. The 0-0 that the sides played out in Serie A at the Juventus Stadium back in November suggests a tight affair, however, the hosts really should have taken the points on that occasion, dominating possession, but failing to take their chances against an inspired Federico Marchetti
Best Bet: Back Juventus to win @ 1.654/6 
Other Recommended Bet: Back Mirko Vucinic to score @ 2.56/4 

Roma v Inter, Wednesday 19:45, ESPN, Match Odds: Roma 2.01/1, Inter 3.7511/4, The Draw 4.1n/a
The first leg of this tie will played just three days after the teams met in this exact fixture in Serie A. Sunday's affair was a typically fierce encounter between the old rivals, with no fewer than nine yellow cards including the whole Inter back three and goalkeeper. The game finished 1-1 but it was the hosts who deserved all three points, controlling the game for much of the 90 minutes without finding the killer touch. With both sides off the pace in the league, the Coppa Italia represents their best chance of silverware and another frenetic contest is likely, though their unpredictable form makes it a hard one to call. One thing is for sure though, Roma are bright starters at home, having led at half-time on no fewer than eight occasions this season. 
Best Bet: Back Roma to lead at half time at 2.56/4

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22 January 2013

Italian Football

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