Serie A Week 2, preview and fixtures: Early nerves to be settled in Italy

Claudio Villa

Now's the time for early nerves to be settled in Serie A, with the pick of week two's games seeing Juventus host Lazio on Saturday evening.

Week two in Serie A promises much excitement, and starts with a bang on Saturday evening. After watching the new-look Napoli, you can see Lazio attempt to exact Supercoppa revenge on Juventus.

Sunday promises almost as much, with AC Milan aiming to prove they aren't planning on making the whole 'out of the scudetto race by December' thing an annual happening, while new boys Sassuolo and Livorno battle it out for their first points of the season.

Saturday, August 31

Chievo Verona vs. Napoli (6 p.m. local, 12 p.m. ET)

"Just because you've got a new coach, why change?" asked Chievo, who started the season with a traditional goalless draw. Actually, the Flying Donkeys played pretty well against Parma on the opening matchday, with only a typically great performance from crociati keeper Antonio Mirante ensuring his side's clean sheet. They'll be looking to give Napoli -- who started the season with a dominant 3-0 win over Bologna -- a similar scare at the Bentegodi.

Blog: The Siren's Song

Juventus vs. Lazio (8:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET)

Lazio can be forgiven for being completely petrified heading into this game, having been on the receiving end of a 4-0 thrashing when they met the scudetto holders in the Supercoppa a couple of weeks ago. However, the 2-1 win over Udinese which opened their Serie A season should provide a welcome confidence boost ahead of this meeting with Juventus, who themselves picked up a narrow win over Sampdoria.

Blog: Black & White & Read All Over

Sunday, September 1

all matches at 8:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET unless otherwise noted

AS Roma vs. Hellas Verona (6 p.m. local, 12 p.m. ET)

Hellas Verona exceeded all expectations in their first Serie A match since 2002, as newly-crowned King of Italy Luca Toni netted twice on his league debut to sink AC Milan. The mastini will have to pull off another big upset to beat Roma this weekend, with Rudi Garcia's reshaped (Erik Lamela-less) squad beating Serie A newcomers Livorno 2-0 on the opening matchday.

Blog: Chiesa Di Totti

Atalanta vs. Torino

Two sides who are just hoping to survive relegation meet in Bergamo this weekend, as Atalanta host Torino. La Dea lost 2-1 to Cagliari in the opening round, though Toro picked up a solid 2-0 win at home to newly-promoted Sassuolo. This one is too close to call.

Bologna vs. Sampdoria

There's more mid-table fun at the Renato Dall'Ara, with Bologna meeting Sampdoria. Stefano Pioli usually has his rossoblù team well drilled, though they barely put up a fight against Napoli in their first match of the Serie A season. He'll be looking for a much-improved display against Sampdoria this weekend, with Delio Rossi's side having only won away from home three times in all of last season.

Catania vs. Inter Milan

Catania lost a couple of important players in the summer, in winger Alejandro Gómez and playmaker Francesco Lodi. However, the elefanti have been up to their usual tricks again, signing some like-for-like replacements to fill the gaps. Their opening game -- a narrow 2-1 defeat to Fiorentina -- showed promise, and they'll hope to take points from an Inter side who started life under Walter Mazzarri with a 2-0 win over Genoa.

Blog: Inter Offside

Genoa vs. Fiorentina

That brings us on to the game at the Luigi Ferraris this weekend, as Fabio Liverani looks to pick up his first points as Genoa coach. He'd better start soon, as precious president Preziosi won't be afraid to swiftly give him the boot. Unfortunately the grifone have a tough task, hosting Fiorentina. The Viola may have lost Adem Ljajić to Roma, but they should still be fighting for the scudetto at the end of the season.

Blog: Viola Nation

AC Milan vs. Cagliari

Max Allegri is perpetually under pressure, though even more so after his Milan side suffered a 2-1 defeat away at newly-promoted Hellas Verona in their opening game. They host Cagliari at the San Siro this weekend, and only a win will settle the nerves. Inconveniently, it won't be easy. The Sardinians are one of the strongest mid-table teams, and have so far managed to hang on to star players Davide Astori and Radja Nainggolan.

Blog: AC Milan Offside

Sassuolo vs. Livorno

Hyperbole lovers would describe this as a relegation six-pointer. Wide-eyed Sassuolo lost 2-0 to Torino in their first ever Serie A game last weekend, and hope to bounce back against another side who came up from Serie B this summer, Livorno. There were six goals in the two meetings between these teams last season, and it could actually be one of the round's more exciting games.

Udinese vs. Parma

Udinese have already completed their annual magical European tournament disappearing act, crashing out of the Europa League to Slovan Liberec. That means they can focus all their attention on this league game against Parma, though knowing the zebrette's traditionally slow starts, they'll probably lose this one too.

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