Pescara vs Fiorentina, preview: All or nothing for la Viola

Paolo Bruno

Not only Fiorentina must win against relegated Pescara to have a hope of claiming Italy's third Champions League slot, but they must also cheer on rivals Siena, who play against Milan.

Last time they faced the now-relegated Dolphins, Fiorentina somehow managed to lose 2-0. Now, the Viola are kicking themselves -- had they managed to beat Pescara, like every other team in the league, they'd hold a one-point lead over AC Milan. Instead, they're two points behind the third-placed rossoneri and are forced to cheer on rivals Siena.

Not only must the viola win on Sunday, Milan must also fail to win. Should Fiorentina grab all three points, and Milan get just one, it'll be Fior playing Champions League football next season -- if they get through the qualifiers, of course. Thanks to a 3-1 victory at the San Siro in November, and a come from behind draw in Florence last month, Fiorentina will go through if the sides wind up equal on points.

But that won't happen. Yes, the viola will beat Pescara. The reverse fixture was a fluke and, at this point, the dolphins don't even have pride to play for. In fact, that match against Fiorentina back on January 6 was the last time Pescara won a match. They finished the season on just 22 points, eight behind 19th placed Siena, and have an impressive -53 goal difference.

Yet there's no reason Milan won't beat Siena. The robur, too, are relegated. They've failed to pick up points since beating Pescara six rounds ago, and they've scored just one goal during those matches. Add to that the fact that Fiorentina and Siena are rivals, and there's not even a reason to show up.

Even if Fiorentina can't manage to clinch the final Champions League spot, at least Adem Ljajic is back from suspension. Right? Oh, just me then? Too bad.

Pescara Injuries and Suspensions

Everyone? No one? Does it really matter, at this point?

Fiorentina Injuries and Suspensions

Alberto Aquilani and Matias Fernandez are slight doubts.

Match Date / Time

Sunday, May 18 at 8:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue

Stadio Adriatico, Pescara

TV

Sky Calcio 3; beIN Sport Play (free stream)

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