Blast Off! Lecce (insert demeaning adjective here) AWAYBy: Mikey P | January 5th, 2011
After a self imposed, unpaid sabbatical, the Bari blog is back! I know, I know, I said I wouldnt put something up until Bari actually won a game, but after some reflection, I realised that course of action was foolish and irresponisble on my part. Besides, this is the first Derby di Puglia in Serie A in 10 years, so if I didnt have a preview for this one, I would have to turn in my Barese card. Rest of the story after the jump.
On the surface, this game is a matchup of the 19th and 20th placed teams in the Italian top flight, a relegation crunch match in very sense. To look a little deeper though, shows that this game is a about a whole lot more. Lets face it a derby match in Italy has very few comparables. Real-Barca, Porto-Benfica, these are huge games no question, but a game like this; between two clubs from the same region of Italy, from these two cities, quite frankly, the word rivalry may be an understatement. Bari is the big city, the capital, while Lecce plays the part of second city, the so called Florence of the Salento. In Bari, we eat brasciole, orrichiette and macaroni al forno. In Lecce, they eat cat. But I digress. Any way you slice, tomorrow’s game at Stadio Via Del Mare (hopefully they can actually half fill the joint) is HUGE!
THE ENEMY- US Lecce-merda
I’m not going to say to much about the boys in yellow-red and dark blue, because frankly I dont know too much, or care too much about them. They are quality Serie B side, from what I can tell. A lot of journeymen (Rosati), sprinkled with a few quality Serie A type players (Di Michele, Chevanton, Oliviera) and some youngsters (Corvia, sort of) and they were always going to struggle to stay up. Their play has been pretty indifferent throughout, with a solitary victory in their last 5. The less I say about them, the better.
Probabale Starting XI
Rosati; Donati, Gustavo, Fabiano, Brivio; Giacomazzi, Vives, Munari; Olivera; Chevanton, Ofere
THE GOOD GUYS IN RED AND WHITE- AS Bari
I took a bit of a run at Lecce only managing 1 win in their last five, but truth be told, I would take that win for us in a heartbeat. Alas, we can say we went into the break on a bit of a high note, scrapping to earn a point, a man down at that, against a very good Palermo side. The positives really and truly stop there though. Lets not mince words, this season has been a disaster on so many levels. Whether it be injuries to key players (Barreto, Ghezzal) underachieving players (A-L-V-A-R-E-Z!!!) key defections in key positions (gulp, Ranocchia and Bonucci) or the fact that teams have seemed to figure out the Mister’s tactics, it has all gone wrong for i Galletti. Amid all that gloom and doom though, and the fact that we have not won a game since September (CAZZO!) we can still escape the relegation zone with a sweep this week with 6 points. Tomorrow is the start of the biggest week of the season for us, 2 VERY winable games (Bologna in casa on Sunday) Lord willing tomorrow is where we blast off!
Of note, the strengthening of the squad has begun, as we have landed CB Glik from Palermo, and the young Italian striker Okaka from Roma, on loan. While these two are not saviours, I believe they are valuable pieces, in positions that we are incredible thin at. Benvenuto Kamil e Stefano. In bocca al lupo!!! (literally tomorrow)
Probable Starting XI
Gillet; A. Masiello, Belmonte, Rinaldi, Raggi; Alvarez, Donati, Gazzi, Rivas; Rana, Kutuzov
This starting XI scares me. First of all, Gazzi is on the pitch, and that friggen Ginger just pisses me off as a footballer. Second, I really dont know shit about Rinaldi and Rana. Quite possibly, we will see Glik inserted at CB and Caputo partnering Kutuzov up front.
I leave you with this interesting stat, courtesy of the good folks at Football Italia
Stat fact: In the past four seasons, the side bottom of the League at Christmas has managed to survive relegation at the end of the season twice – Cagliari despite being five points adrift in 2007-08 and Chievo in 2008-09 after trailing 17th place by six points.
LETS MAKE IT 3 IN THE PAST 5!!! It starts tomorrow!!!
So there you have it, just a quick one this week, and hopefully we make quick work of those dirty Salenti tomorrow.
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