Fiorentina are begging to be acknowledged as one of the best teams in Italy, however, after last weekend’s loss to on-fire Napoli, they will want to reassert their domestic ambitions in this game. The team from fabulous Florence may be flying high in Europe – an encouraging spark for the Italian league – but la Viola must prove that they are formidable domestically if they are to establish Florence as one of the cities in the elite group that consistently challenge for lo Scudetto. .
Catania are a side that love to irritate their opponents and will not make it easy for Fiorentina, as Inter are aware – barely hanging on for a win in their encounter last weekend. The Rossoblu have plenty of talent on the field, but it’s not about just possessing talent, it is having the ability to use it well.
In the Champions League, La Viola recovered well from their opening game defeat against Lyon, but this may have come at some cost to their domestic form. They have had to rest certain players and that has resulted in them being under strength in some league games, resulting in points being lost. An example of this was last weekend’s game against Napoli – they started the game with Gilardino on the bench and were severely punished. It was only after the introduction of Gila that they started to create opportunities, almost immediately. Had they begun the game with him, the score-line may have read a little differently. Fiorentina have only won four league games this season, drawing three and losing two. Not bad statistics, but not stats that would instil fear in their opposition. However, the dynamic duo of Adrian Muto and Prince Alberto will be on mission to make a serious challenge for the title.
21 Comotto – 5 Gamberini – 3 Dainelli – 23 Pasqual
15 Zanetti – 18 Montolivo
32 Marchionni – 10 Mutu – 6 Vargas
Catania have had an abysmal campaign, managing only one win this season, against Cagliari in week eight and are currently propping up the table in a lowly 19th place. Having said that, they are not a team that should be taken lightly, as Inter found out last weekend. They will irritate and frustrate the opposition until they make a mistake and try to take full advantage. Unlike the team from Tuscany, the Rossoblu are not taking part in any other competitions. This will, no doubt, mean that they will be the more energetic side with a lot to gain and a lot to lose. This game will be about sheer pride and also reminding people that they have the strength and determination to cause an upset. With players that posses the talent of Giuseppe Mascara, it should be an unpredictable and entertaining game.
2 Potenza – 6 Silvestre- 3 Spolli – 33 Capuano
8 Ledesma – 5 Carboni – 27 Biagianti
19 Ricchiuti – 7 Mascara
With both teams losing their midweek games, Fiorentina to Genoa, and Catania to Chievo, this fixture will be treated with the highest importance. Fiorentina, still in 8th place, must win games against lowly opposition, like this one, if they are to finish in the top four for the third year in a row. Meanwhile, Catania are desperate for any opportunity to accrue some points and escape from their current position – the relegation zone. Fiorentina must, therefore, consider carefully whether to rest important players for this game. Although it would be in the interest of their Champions League campaign, it could transform Catania’s desperation into determination, and instil belief in gli Elefanti they can at least draw with an inconsistent and compromised Fiorentina side. However, the Sicilians also have decisions to calculate. Should Gianluca Atzori continue with the defensive tactics he used against Inter, it seems reasonable to assume that the perceptive Cesare Prandelli will have the experience to outwit him in a tactical encounter, so a physically assertive game plan would be more effective. With both teams making possible sacrifices, it will be interesting to see which payoff and which transpire to be the ultimate sacrifice – not death though, just the loss of a game of football.