Parma vs. Catania, Preview: Snow threatens potential entertainer

Claudio Villa

One Serie A match in Emilia-Romagna has already fallen victim to the snow, and by Sunday morning it could be two. If not, a good game is in the offing.

Parma are hoping that covering the pitch in a tarpaulin will be enough to see off the weather, with the surface subject to an inspection on Sunday morning.

If it does go ahead, the crociati will be hoping the sunned Sicilians will struggle to reach the fluidity which has seen them to a red-hot seventh place in Serie A this season, with Rolando Maran's side only three points behind former coach Vincenzo Montella's side, Fiorentina.

Parma are currently tenth in the league, and will be looking to snap out of the form which has seen them fail to win in their last six. They still have an unquestionably impressive home record -- having been beaten at the Tardini just once in Serie A this season -- but they now haven't won there since the first match of the year.

Catania are one of the few teams to have beaten Parma on home turf in the last year, and did so on penalties in the Coppa Italia back in December. In the league, though, they haven't been the most successful away from the Angelo Massimino, having won just twice on the road in 12 attempts.

The hosts will have goalkeeper Antonio Mirante back from injury earlier than expected, though McDonald Mariga, Fabiano Santacroce and Daniele Galloppa are all still injured. None of said trio's absences will worry Roberto Donadoni too much.

As for Catania, they have a few rather more concerning absentees. One of their wing wonders Pablo Barrientos will miss out injured again, along with midfielder Sergio Almirón who headed in the elefanti's only goal in the victory over Bologna in the last game. Fabio Sciacca and Ciro Capuano are also injured, while Marco Biagianti is suspended.

The upshot is the possibility of a switch to a 4-2-3-1 for Maran with Keko as trequartista, instead of the usually preferred 4-3-3. As per usual, Donadoni will have to decide whether to tackle the the rossazzurri with a 4-3-3 or a 3-5-2. Both of these clubs can play some of the most attractive football Serie A, so all hopes are pinned on the game taking place.

Parma Injuries and Suspensions

McDonald Mariga, Fabiano Santacroce and Daniele Galloppa (injured)

Catania Injuries and Suspensions

Pablo Barrientos, Sergio Almirón, Fabio Sciacca and Ciro Capuano (injured); Marco Biagianti (suspended)

Match Date/Time: Sunday 24th February 2013 3 p.m. local, 9 a.m. E.T.

Venue: Stadio Ennio Tardini, Parma, Italy

TV: Sky Calcio 5, Premium Calcio (Italy)

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