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Serie A Week 7 - 19/10/08 (14.00 UK)
Torino - Cagliari
Stadio Olimpico

This fixture hardly has ‘classic’ written all over it, but it could be decisive in Torino and Cagliari’s respective seasons. Toro haven’t won since the opening day of the campaign while the Sardi have yet to record a victory in 2008-09, piling the pressure on Massimiliano Allegri.

Torino have notched up four more points than Cagliari, yet some would argue that Allegri’s side has played the better football and is unlucky to find itself at the bottom of Serie A after six games. That is likely to be the only reason trigger happy President Massimo Cellino has held fire and taken the unusual step of putting faith in his Coach, who guided Sassuolo to Serie B last year.

Worryingly though, Cagliari haven’t had that difficult a start to the season. Yes, they have already faced Juventus, Milan and Lazio, but one would have expected them to get more from trips to Siena, Lecce and Atalanta. With confidence low, Allegri no doubt thought the international break couldn’t come fast enough. He’ll have had 14 days to prepare his players come Sunday and the Sardi’s supporters will be hoping he’s picked his players up.

One thing they can take heart from is the likely absence of Torino talisman Alessandro Rosina, who just cannot shake an injury sustained against Inter in Week 3. ‘Rosinaldo’ is the only player who makes Toro tick, giving Coach Gianni De Biasi a real headache.

Torino have defensive frailties as well. Having scored three and kept a clean sheet in the first game at the Olimpico this season, De Biasi’s side have conceded six in their last two home games and netted only two in reply. The Granata’s apologists will put that down to the standard of opposition Torino have entertained at home in 2008-09, Serie A leaders Inter and Udinese.

Still, Torino are as much in need of a victory as Cagliari this weekend. Relegation looms large for both of them.

Keep an eye on: Matteo Rubin (Torino) – The 21-year-old has become the cornerstone of Pierluigi Casiraghi’s Azzurrini side after performing impressively at left-back for Torino. Rubin recently returned from a serious knee ligament injury, which kept him out of the game for six months. He’s back now, though, and stronger than ever.

Last season: Torino 2-0 Cagliari

Form guide: Torino (D L D L L) Cagliari (L L L L D)
Torino (probable): Sereni; Diana, Di Loreto, Ogbonna, Rubin; Zanetti, Dzemaili, Saumel; Abate, Amoruso; Bianchi

Cagliari (probable): Marchetti; Pisano, Lopez, Bianco, Agostini; Biondini, Conti, Fini; Cossu; Larrivey, Acquafresca

Ref: To follow…

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Pretty bad from what I hear, I was flying back home so I didn't see the match. The team is a mess now, we are almost certainly getting relegated, especially with the likes of Novellino and Camolese being speculated as GDB's successor and not someone like Donadoni.
 
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