Back to where it all began for Bortolo Mutti. In actuality, given the delay of the start of the Serie A season, the week one fixture of Novara – Palermo was rescheduled all the way till a month ago. It was Mutti’s first game in charge and now, only a few weeks later, they’re on the schedule once again as the second half of the season kicks off.
Mutti and Palermo have a chance to enact some revenge after they let a 2-0 lead slip away in the final ten minutes. Josip Ilicic also has a big opportunity to redeem himself after his unnecessary red card forced the Rosanero to play with ten men for the majority of the game. Nonetheless, the second game in a row at the Barbera is a welcome sign for the Rosanero.
Novara currently sit dead last in the table. The newcomers haven’t had much success in Serie A as they’ve only managed two wins in 19 matches. Their coach, Tesser, has had his hands full trying to come up with the right system and the right players. Given their struggles, the club has also intervened in the transfer market and it seems like they’re building a team full of reject ex-Rosanero players. Of the probable 11 players in the starting lineup tomorrow, six of them have, at one time or another, played at Palermo (Ujkani, Dellafiore, Rinaudo, Morganella, Mascara, Caracciolo). Incredibly, two more exes (Jeda, Garcia) will probably make the Novara bench! Novara are only one of three teams in the league who have yet to win away from home (not surprisingly, the others are Palermo and Siena – even though Siena beat Palermo at the Barbera in the Coppa Italia). There are no excuses for a loss. Palermo needs to find consistency and they can pick up momentum by beating a dead-last Novara side.
Munoz – Silvestre – Mantovani – Balzaretti
Migliaccio – Donati – Barreto
Miccoli – Budan
Bench: Tzorvas; Pisano, Aguirregaray; Bertolo, Zahavi, Vazquez; Mehmeti
Everything is set in place for Sunday’s match against Novara. Mutti really only has one positional battle to deal with: will Pisano get the start after finally returning to the called up list after a long injury layoff? Smart money says that Munoz still gets the nod as Pisano may not be 100% fit for a full 90 minute game. Zahavi is also a recent return to the list after his full recovery from injury. Despite all that, Mutti has all but confirmed the 4-3-1-2 that worked so marvelously against Genoa. Will the second game yield the same positive result?
SIAMO TERRONI E CE NE VANTIAMOOOOO!!!!!