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Montella Marches Forward: Fiorentina-Cagliari

Dino Panato

Fiorentina confirms it's status in October as two crucial wins in the span of a week have the viola climbing the table and looking as one of the top contenders of the season. This weekend, the islanders from Sardinia arrive to get what they can from the Franchi.

We can finally say it's cool to be a Fiorentina fan again. Fast paced, attractive, fun football, scoring from every possible position and angle now have Fiorentina as one of the season favorites to make results. Last weeks win against Lazio solidified the team that Montella has been building, and a Thursday win in Genoa have everyone on a high. But it's not time to break open the bottles yet. A sturdy and sometimes surprising Sardinian side arrive tomorrow along one of Serie A's other favorite lunatics president Cellino.

Cagliari sit in 8th place sandwiched between Roma and Milan with 14 points. They arrive on the back of a flawless October, collecting wins against Torino, Bologna, Sampdoria, and Siena. They are a sturdy yet sometimes inconsistent side relying on the strike force of Nene, Sau, and Pinilla to get the job done. Cagliari is a team that historically has either frustrated or laid down to the viola, but their record at the Franchi is anything except impressive. Last season's meeting at the Franchi came on the last day of the season and registered little else than a friendly match which ended 0-0 and players who might have well already been on vacation. Do not expect the same apathetic attitude tomorrow.

Montella is thinking of a mini-turnover before heading to San Siro against Milan next week, even if it means benching JoJo. However the more likely solution is starting JoJo from the first minute but taking him out in the second half depending on how the game is going. Pizarro has recovered and will feature in the midfield as the starting lineup looks quite like what we took to Genoa. Viviano will start with Gonzalo, Roncaglia, and Savic once again one upping Tomovic, while Cuadrado and Pasqual will cover Pizarro, Borja, and one between Mati, Migliaccio, or Romulo. Ljajic will partner JoJo upfront but thats not to say Toni could bump him out at the last minute. Toni counts Cagliari as one of his favorite scoring opportunities counting three goals in his two viola seasons.

Cagliari new coach Ivo Pulga comes in with Agazzi covered by Pisano, Rossettini, Astori, and Avelar, while Edkal, Dessena, Cossu, and Casarini cover Sau and Nene.

It would be wise to start Aquilani from the beginning but the important part is shutting down Cossu, Dessena, and limiting Sau and Nene. Also avoiding stupid fouls would be nice but we know how Serie A refs have been about their cards lately. Either way it's a huge opportunity to move forward and shouldn't be missed.


Facundo Fun Fact of the Day: When Facundo was a child he used to put teeth under his pillow for the tooth fairy...usually the teeth weren't his.