Empoli will look to continue their fight for survival when they welcome Torino to the Stadio Carlo Castellani in the Serie A on Sunday.
Gli Azzurri have picked up momentum in their relegation fight and are looking to beat the drop. They are currently 18th in the league table, with 35 points from 36 games. They are just a lone point behind Genoa who are winless in their last 5 games.
Thus, Aurelio Andreazzoli’s men have every incentive to pick up 3 points when Torino roll into town. They won 2-1 away at Sampdoria in the previous game and are in a good moment.
However, their visitors are not short of motivation either. While Il Toro are not fighting relegation, they are in the mix for European football next season. Walter Mazzarri’s men are currently 7th in the league table, with 60 points from 36 games.
They are 2 points off the last European spot, currently occupied by AS Roma. AC Milan are also on the same number of points and in 5th place. Thus Toro have all the reason to try and pick all 3 points against one of the bottom-placed teams in the league.
The Turin club are coming to this match on the back of a thrilling 3-2 win vs Sassuolo in the previous game and will look to keep the spirits up.
In terms of team news, Empoli will be without Antonino La Gumina, Domenico Maietta and Luca Antonelli. Lorenzo Polvani is a long-term absentee with a cruciate ligament injury. Finally, Cristian Dell’Orco and Francesco Caputo are expected to face late fitness tests before the match.
Meanwhile, Mazzarri will be without Koffi Djidji, who suffered a knee injury towards the end of April. Vittorio Parigini, Cristian Daniel Ansaldi and Iago Falque are doubts for the game as well.
In terms of form, Empoli have won their last 2 league games while losing the 2 prior to that. Their visitors are in much better form, winning 3 of their last 4 games and holding champions Juventus to a 1-1 draw in the other one.
However, the home side have a 100% unbeaten record in their last 12 games against Torino in all competitions. Out of the previous 3 meetings between the two, 2 have ended in draws.
Il Toro did win the reverse fixture with a convincing three-goal margin though. Further, Empoli have conceded the second-most goals in the league this season and the visitors can be expected to score. However, Andreazzoli’s side are unbeaten in 6 of their last 7 home games and would look to take inspiration from their supporters.
Meanwhile, Mazzarri’s side have not tasted defeat in any of their last 8 Serie A games, making this tie close to an even contest.
Empoli Predicted XI: Dragowski; Veseli, Silvestre, Dell’Orco; Lorenzo, Krunic, Bennacer, Traore, Pajac; Caputo, Farias
Torino Predicted XI: Sirigu; Izzo, Nkoulou, Moretti; Silvestri, Rincon, Lukic, Aina; Baselli, Berenguer; Belotti