In the 18th round of Serie A, SPAL will host Udinese at Stadio Paolo Mazza in hopes to end their winless streak of 9 games.
SPAL are currently 16th in the league with an overall record of 4-4-9. In their last 5 games, they have drawn 3 against; Empoli (2:2), Genoa (1:1), Chievo (0:0) and lost 2 against Juventus (2:0) and most recently against Napoli (1:0). Looking at their last match against Napoli, Spal suffered a goal in the 45’+1 despite holding on well for the whole 1st half. Spal had 36% ball possession, 3 goal attempts and 1 shot on goal, while Napoli held 64% ball possession, had 8 goal attempts and 2 shots on goal in the first 45 minutes. The second half was much closer statistics wise, with Spal and Napoli sharing 7 goal attempts and 5 shots on goal each, while Napoli still had the majority of the ball possession (54%). All in all, it was a good performance from Spal, who even came close to scoring a goal and playing a draw. The fact that Spal is just barely above the relegation zone, their performance is even more impressive especially against a team that is 2nd in the league, 8 points behind the leading Juventus.
Udinese are currently 17th in the league with 14 points and an overall record of 3-5-9. In the last 5 games, Udinese won against AS Roma (1:0), lost to Atalanta (1:3), Inter (1:0) and drew against Sassuolo (0:0) and most recently against Frosinone (1:1). As of now, Udinese has won only 1 away game, drew 3 and lost 4. Their last away win came on 23rd September against Chievo (0:2), but have failed to win an away match ever since (5 games). In their most recent match against Frosinone, Udinese was far from impressive or even decent. Frosinone who are currently second-to-last team in the Serie A was the better side throughout the match. Despite having 47% bal possession, Frosinone had 10 goal attempts and 6 shots on goal, while Udinese had 9 goal attempts and 1 shot on goal, which was seemingly enough for them to score in the 32nd minute of the match. In the second half, Frosinone was the dominant side, however, their only goal came from a penalty kick in the 61st minute. We did not see any more goals for the remaining 29 minutes, and with that, the match ended at 1:1.
Looking at the last time these two teams met, it was almost a year ago (21st January 2018), when the match ended in a draw (1:1). This fixture today will be the 3rd time the two sides met in the Serie A, and from what we have seen from them in recent matches, it just might be the 1st time Spal will be victorious. In away games, Udinese is simply not as good as they would have hoped. In the last 5 away games, Udinese has lost 3 and drew 2, with 4 goals scored and 7 conceded. Their most recent performance against Frosinone was terrible. Udinese had only 1 shot on goal and scored only 1 goal against a team that has suffered 11 goals in their last 5 games while scoring only 2. If they struggled against Frosinone, I simply can’t expect them to put up a decent fight against Spal, who is coming into this match after an impressive battle against Napoli.
Prediction: SPAL to win