Pescara vs Cagliari, Preview: A relegation six pointer

Giuseppe Bellini

Two sides at the wrong end of the Serie A standings collide at the Stadio Adriatico.

In truth, you never know what you're going to get with these two teams. Ever since their fine victory at Fiorentina at the turn of the year, Pescara have gone on a four game losing streak. They came away from Palermo with a point last weekend to end their barren spell, but dropped into the relegation zone as a result.

Cristiano Bergodi is under pressure to deliver results, especially after club President Daniele Sebastiani met up with former coach Zdenek Zeman during a charity Golf tournament in midweek. The Czech tactician is still loved by the Pescara fans for guiding them into Serie A after a long exile and is out of work following his dismissal from AS Roma. Sebastiani has claimed the "door is always open" for Zeman to return, but publicly backed Bergodi until the end of the season.

Juan Fernando Quintero is back to give the Delfini a lift after starring for Colombia in the U20 South American Youth Championships. The playmaker was named MVP of the tournament after leading his country to victory and chipping in five goals in the process. His return is a timely one given the unavailability of other jewel in the crown Vladimir Weiss.

Cagliari on the other hand are unbeaten in five games, yet still find themselves in trouble and just four points better off than their opponents. Poor discipline has come at a cost for the Sicilians this season. Davide Astori's second dismissal of the campaign gave AC Milan a way back into the game last weekend and cost Cagliari two precious points. The suspension merry-go-round benches Astori, along with Daniele Conti and Daniele Dessena, but Radja Nainggolan and Danilo Avelar return to the side after their bans.

With club President Massimo Cellino in trouble with the law over the construction of the IS Arenas, the Sardinians will need to put their off-field troubles out of their minds if they want to come away with the points.

Pescara came away from the IS Arenas with a 2-1 win back in Week 6. However, they must do without the services of Eugenio Romulo Togni, Ciro Capuano, Francesco Modesto and Ferdinando Sforzini. Meanwhile, frontman Giuseppe Sculli is still waiting for his first run-out after joining the side on loan from Lazio.

Pescara injuries and suspensions

Out: Francesco Modesto, Marco Capuano, Eugenio Togni, Vladimir Weiss, Ferdinando Sforzini (injured)

Cagliari injuries and suspensions

Out: Davide Astori, Daniele Conti, Daniele Dessena (suspended)

Match Date/Time: Sunday 17th February 2013 3:00 p.m. local, 9:00 a.m. ET

Venue: Stadio Adriatico, Pescara, Italy

TV: Sky Calcio 2 (Italy)

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