Genoa vs. Fiorentina, preview: A tired side faces inferior opposition

Gabriele Maltinti

Fiorentina are about to play their third match in a week, and judging from their match against Grasshoppers, the Viola are looking forward to a break. But will Genoa really challenge them in any way?

It's already been a long week for Fiorentina, and now it's time to face Genoa at the Marassi. The viola beat Catania 2-1 on Monday evening, then lost 1-0 to Grasshoppers on Thursday but advanced on away goals to the next round of Europa League. Now it's time for their third match in a week, and Vincenzo Montella has some choices to make. Who's fit enough to start? Who could use some time on the bench?

More from our team blogs: Viola Nation, a Fiorentina Blog

Montella has already said that using Juan Cuadrado would be silly, as the midfielder picked up a knock against Grasshoppers and could use a bit of a rest. Speculation remains, however, as to who else might get some time off. Could it be Mario Gomez, who has failed to impress in his first matches with Fiorentina? What about Borja Valero, who just looks like he could use a day off? And do the viola have a special top secret goalkeeper they can pull out to stand in for Neto?

Paying a bit extra for Emiliano Viviano isn't looking so silly now, is it, Fior?

And then there's Genoa. The rossoblu have played two matches and have failed to impress in either of them -- in other words, picking up right where they left off last season. Genoa attempted to prop up its ailing side with players more on the level of Serie A, yet even the likes of Alberto Gilardino, Francesco Lodi and Mattia Perin have failed to grab a victory for their side.

In fact, Genoa are continuing to reinforce their side, knowing that, at the very least, there will be trouble with the ultras if they don't start winning. They've now brought in Luca Antonini from AC Milan -- because every side needs a 31 year old wing back -- and sent Valter Birsa the other way. Not a moment too soon, apparently, as Sime Vrsaljko has picked up an injury, so Antonini will stand in. Meanwhile, it's rumored that Juraj Kucka won't play, as he's trying to negotiate a move away from the rossoblu before the transfer window closes.

But even against a tired Fiorentina, a win from the rag-tag bunch that Genoa have assembled seems unlikely. But they did manage to hold Inter Milan scoreless until the 75th minute, so it's probably not outside the realm of possibility to imagine this one ending in a draw.

Please don't hurt me, Fiorentina fans.

Genoa Injuries and Suspensions

Out: Sime Vrsaljko In doubt: Juraj Kucka

Fiorentina Injuries and Suspensions

Out: Juan Cuadrado In doubt: Mario Gomez, Borja Valero

Projected lineups

Genoa: Perin; Antonini, Portanova, Manfredini, Antonelli; Cofie, Lodi, Kucka; Bertolacci, Santana; Gilardino.

Fiorentina: Neto; Compper, Rodriguez, Pasqual, Savic; Pizarro, Aquilani, Valero; Joaquin; Gomez, Rossi

Match Date / Time: Sunday, September 1 at 8:45 p.m. local, 2:45 p.m. ET

Venue: Stadio Comunale Luigi Ferraris, Genoa

TV: Sky Calcio 3 (Italy)

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