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Fiorentina vs. Genoa: Match Preview

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Mario Gomez and company play their first home match of the season against Gasperini's Genoa

Let's get this freight train running. Photo
Let's get this freight train running. Photo
Valerio Pennicino

It feels as if now the season can properly begin, with the nauseating trip to Rome behind us and the transfer window closed. Fiorentina can now get moving in the right direction in front of their home fans, who they would do well to reward with a convincing performance, as they are (as always) fully behind the team. The season ticket subscriptions close today, but Fiorentina fans have already claimed over 21,000, the 4th most in Italy. It'll be a packed house in Florence on Sunday, with the home fans hoping to see some marvelous play from the boys in purple.

Not that it will be easy against a gritty and well-organized Genoa. They are fresh off of a heartbreaking opening loss to Napoli, who claimed the victory with almost no time left. Watch out for Chilean international Mauricio Pinilla, who looks a potential upgrade on the injury prone and inconsistent ex-Viola Alberto Gilardino, and Pinilla also has a frustrating habit of scoring against Fiorentina: he's scored 4 in his last 3 games against la ViolaFacundo Roncaglia is also set to make a debut start for the grifoni against the club who has loaned him out. A bet on Fiorentina scoring from the penalty spot might be worth a couple .

Genoa, unlike Fiorentina, have no injury problems ahead of this game and are set to field a full strength squad. Keep an eye on Luca Antonelli, one of their most consistent performers in the left back position, and Mattia Perin in goal. The young Italian keeper was the star of another heroic performance in goal for the Genoese club against Napoli, and while his inexperience has let in a few clangers in recent times, most Viola fans will recall his annoyingly masterful performance while in goal for Pescara at the Franchi...

For Fiorentina, Vincenzo Montella has plenty of cards in the deck, including some new ones freshly presented to the fans in midweek. Micah Richards may make his debut on the right hand side of a back 4 ahead of Nenad Tomovic, although the Englishman openly admitted that he is still returning to his best form. Milan Badelj may also be a wild card addition to midfield, and it is likely that whoever Vincenzo selects to play in the middle will find some joy against Genoa's weakest department. What Montella lacks is his trump card, Giuseppe Rossi, who will be out for a minimum of 4 months while a ligament suture heals. So now to find an attack that unlocks Mario Gomez, maximizes Juan Cuadrado, and doesn't leave the team exposed... We'll see what the Little Airplane can come up with. Whoever starts, it will certainly be good to see the Artemio Franchi packed again, and hear that familiar song... Ooooo Fiorentinaaaaa...

Projected Lineups

Fiorentina (4-3-1-2): Neto; Richards, Gonzalo, Savic, Pasqual; Aquilani, Pizarro, Borja Valero; Ilicic; Cuadrado, Gomez

Genoa (4-3-3): Perin; Roncaglia, De Maio, Burdisso, Antonelli; Rincon, Bertolacci, Sturaro; Perotti, Pinilla, Kucka