Prediction and Preview Serie A: Torino vs AS Roma Apr 12, 2015

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Despite returning to form in recent weeks, Roma travel to Torino knowing that three points are imperative if they are to continue to remain active in the Serie A title race.

Torino also head into the fixture aware that they need to put together a string of victories in order to keep pace with their rivals in the race for a top-five position at the end of May.

At one stage this season, it appeared as though Torino would have to be content with a mid-table finish as they battled to cope with a hectic domestic and European schedule, but since December, they've been one of the form teams in Serie A.

Il Toro have recorded 30 points from their last 16 league fixtures, with just two defeats coming during that period, while they've showed their bouncebackability with maximum points after previously losing twice in a row.

They were expected to see off financially-stricken Parma, and a 2-0 win justified that prediction, but they had to dig deeper in order to edge out Atalanta by a 2-1 scoreline last weekend.

Back-to-back successes have left Torino within six points of fifth place, which will also lead to Europa League qualification, and even though they still have plenty of work ahead of them, a favourable run-in could see Giampiero Ventura's men make a late charge.

After Roma, Juventus and AC Milan are still to come but Torino will enter their other remaining games as favourites and they have every chance of averaging two points per game until the end of the campaign.

However, they will need Fabio Quagliarella to find a sustained run of form with the striker only netting three times in his previous 10 outings.

Roma boss Rudi Garcia appeared under pressure at the Stadio Olimpico after registering just two victories from 13 games, but maximum points from their last two matches have helped the club remain in second spot in the table.

A narrow 1-0 win at Cesena halted a run of five games without success, before a first-half strike from Miralem Pjanic earned his side a 1-0 triumph over Napoli last weekend.

Both results have kept Roma above city rivals Lazio, who have been superb in recent weeks, but Garcia will be aware that he still needs more from his team if they are to hold off the challenge of the Biancazzurri.

Garcia will be happy with a defence that have kept four clean sheets in seven matches, but goals continue to be a worry, with the team failing to score more than two goals in a game in 23 fixtures in all competitions.

Everyone associated with the club will speak about still maintaining hope of winning the league title, but given Juventus' 14-point lead with just nine games left, they are realistically fighting it out for second spot.

Anything less than that position will result in the campaign being seen as a failure, but a top-three spot earns Champions League football and that was the bare minimum that was expected at the start of the season.

Earlier this week, Roma midfielder Daniele de Rossi was diagnosed with a micro-fracture of his vertebra, but the Italian international is expected to be passed fit to feature at the weekend.

Defender Ashley Cole has fractured his hand, but the former Chelsea man is available for selection after the injury was placed in a cast.

Torino's only injury worry is centre-back Gaston Silva, who has been restricted to an individual training programme all week as he attempts to recover in time for Sunday's game.

Migjen Basha is suspended after being sent off just 10 minutes after coming on a substitute against Atalanta.

Torino possible starting lineup:
Padelli, Moretti, Molinaro, Glik, Maksimovic, Bruno Peres, Gazzi, Vives, El Kaddouri, Lopez, Quagliarella

Roma possible starting lineup:
De Sanctis, Holebas, Torosidis, Astori, Manolas, De Rossi, Nainggolan, Pjanic, Florenzi, Ljajic, Iturbe

Tag : Serie A
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