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Fiorentina vs. Genoa: Preview and how to watch

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Paulo Sousa and co. will try to right the ship against a dangerous Genoa.

Gabriele Maltinti/Getty Images
Fiorentina vs. Genoa:Saturday, September 12th 5:00 PM CET, 12:00 PM ET Stadio Artemio Franchi Florence, Italy

With two weeks to bury the Torino game, Fiorentina should be ready to show the Franchi that the embarrassment against the Granata was a one-off. The challenger is a tough and pacey Genoa, who sit one spot above Fiorentina in the table, although only a single goal separates them. While Fiorentina may not consider Genoa a major rival, the Genovese may differ on that point: this fixture has been quite heated in recent years, with the Rossoblu receiving red cards in four of the past five meetings. Of those, Fiorentina have won two and drawn three. The referee for the match is Daniele Doveri, about whom I defer to slakas.

FIORENTINA

After spanking AC Milan in the opener and getting shellacked by Torino on the road, la Viola return to the friendly confines of the Franchi. While Paulo Sousa doesn't have any injuries to deal with, he's expected to make some big changes to his starting eleven, and also possibly to his formation.

The rumor is that Giuseppe Rossi and Khouma Babacar, both fully operational, will start in this match, and that Davide Astori is set to make his first start for Fiorentina as well. A Milan Badelj return also seems likely. Given the events of two weeks ago, I expect Sousa to switch to a 4-2-3-1 and overload Genoa in the wide areas, although he could opt to continue with the 3-5-1-1 and change formations in the second half. A cameo appearance for Jakub Błaszczykowski is also probable.

GENOA

Genoa lost a Week 1 heartbreaker at Palermo, as the hosts bundled one over in stoppage time. They did better next time out, handling Hellas Verona 2-0. Gianpiero Gasperini has some personnel decisions to make, as starting keeper and bane of the Viola Mattia Perin still isn't fit, and centerback Sebastien de Maio, winger Diego Capel, and strikers Serge Gakpé and Leonardo Pavoletti could also miss out.

Regardless of which players he can choose from, the Genoa mister should come out in the 3-5-2 he's used in both games this season. He'll probably try to replicate Torino's tactics, sitting very deep to start, then getting more adventurous and pressing the center backs while tightly marking Borja Valero. Genoa attack predominantly down their right, so a good game from Marcos Alonso or Manuel Pasqual is a must. The danger men are Manchester City loanee Olivier Ntcham and Goran Pandev, although Diego Laxalt and Tomas Rincon are also influential in the attack.

PROJECTED LINEUPS

Fiorentina (4-2-3-1): Tatarusanu; Alonso, Gonzalo, Astori, Tomovic; Valero, Badelj; Bernardeschi, Rossi, Ilicic; Babacar

Genoa (3-4-1-2): Lamanna; Marchese, Burdisso, Izzo; Cissokho, Tino Costa, Rincon, Laxalt; Ntcham; Pandev, Lazovic

HOW TO WATCH

TV: Doesn't really look like anyone's got this one.

Online: Viewing options can be found here. Any illegal streams in the comments will be deleted, and repeat offenders will be banned. As always, we'll have a match thread live here for discussion of the game at hand. You can also follow along with us live on Twitter, and we'll have updates of the most important events on our Facebook page.

Hopelessly optimistic prediction

I predict Fiorentina 3-2 Genoa, with goals from Rossi, Babacar, and Gonzalo for the good guys, and Pandev and Tino Costa for the bad guys.