Friday, August 21, 2009

The Debut of Serie A 2009-2010

This weekend marks the start of the 2009-2010 Serie A season, and with most of the Serie A transfer news being about high profile departures to La Liga, it appears that this season will once again highlight the existence of a certain parity that is hard to find in most major European leagues. I've already gone on the record elsewhere, but let me make it clear here, I expect Juventus to win the Scudetto this season. It won't be easy for Juve, Inter is still strong and teams like Genoa and Napoli seem on the cusp of making a big push in the table. Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see if newly promoted sides like Parma, Bari, and Livorno will survive the season. If the deal to sell Bari to an American businessman goes through, it'll be interesting to see what they do in the January transfer window.

I give Juventus the edge in the Scudetto since I believe Inter's main focus will the Champions League. Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see if Leonardo can keep AC Milan in the top four this season.

Finally, now that Serie A has split from the rest of Italian football in a manner similar to the EPL break-away, it will be interesting to see if there is an influx of money into the Serie A clubs and how that impacts the January transfer window.

Here's some matches to look for this weekend:

Siena v. Milan (Can Siena survive the season or end up relegated? Milan has had a rough preseason, so a strong start is important.)

Palermo v. Napoli (A battle between two teams looking for European spots. This will be the debut of Zenga at Palermo.)

Genoa v. Roma (These two clubs missed out on top four finishes last season, and both will want to break into the top four this season.)

For those in the US, Fox Soccer Channel will air the following Serie A matches (all times CDT):

11:00 am - Bologna v. Fiorentina
1:30 pm - Siena v. AC Milan

12:00 pm - Inter v. Bari

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