Claudio Ranieri's side will be keen to back up their victory on Thursday with another win in Genoa..Slipping Down The Ladder
Sampdoria may cling on to the comfort of a game in hand but the Genoa-based side cannot eclipse their stuttering form and their slide into mid-table mediocrity. Thursday's comprehensive 3-0 defeat to Palermo in Sicily was Domenico Di Carlo's side third successive defeat in a row in all competitions and pushed them down to ninth in the league standings in Serie A.
With 23 points from 17 matches, Samp are seven points off a Europa League slot and a further two behind fourth-placed Roma, who also happen to occupy the final Champions League slot allotted to Italy. It's gradually becoming dire for Samp, who are struggling for creativity and spark in the attacking department.
But hope springs eternal. Along with Parma Samp are defensively the best home side in the division as they have conceded just four goals. The Blucerchiati are also unbeaten in their last six league fixtures in Genoa and will be confident of winning against Roma on Sunday in the lunch-time kick-off.
Rising Up The Ladder
Roma commenced the new year on a high as the Giallorossi defeated Catania 4-2 at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome on Thursday. It was a thoroughly entertaining game of football in which Marco Borriello and Mirko Vucinic both scored a brace.
The win was Roma's third in a row in Serie A and propelled them up to fourth in the league standings on 32 points from 18 matches. Claudio Ranieri's side remain seven points behind league leaders Milan and hopes of their first championship success since 2001 have not yet vanished.
However, winning on the road has been Roma's problem as so far in nine matches, the Lupi have won just two. Encouragingly for the former Italian champions, their last league encounter on the road was against Milan at San Siro, which was their final game before Christmas; it ended in a 1-0 victory for the Romans.
Semioli and Cacciatore are out injured for Samp. Marilungo and Pazzini will be the two strikers upfront.
Lobont and Pizarro are injured for the Lupi, who will commence in a 4-3-1-2 formation that will have Borriello and Totti as the two strikers.