Sampdoria play host to Spezia on Friday night with both clubs occupying a place just above the Serie A relegation zone.
At a time when the home side are without a victory in four games, Spezia are one spot higher in 16th position on the back of their win over Salernitana.
Having gone four matches without defeat earlier in the season, Sampdoria looked on course for an enjoyable campaign under Roberto D’Aversa.
However, collecting just one point and conceding 13 goals during their next quartet of fixtures has put a different spin on matters, Sampdoria now down in 17th position.
With Napoli and Juventus coming during that recent run, the club’s supporters may be willing to have some patience, but they would have shared D’Aversa’s disappointment with the 3-1 defeat at Cagliari.
Aside from next week’s meeting with Atalanta BC, I Blucerchiati have a more favourable schedule in front of them with four of their next six games being staged at Stadio Luigi Ferraris.
Nevertheless, nothing will improve unless they find a solution to their issues in defence with no clean sheets being kept at their home ground.
From Spezia’s perspective, a meeting with their next opponents will feel like the ideal opportunity to move clear of the bottom three.
The comeback success over Salernitana have breathed new life into their season having previously shipped nine times in defeats to Juventus, AC Milan and Hellas Verona.
Thiago Motta will not get carried away by that last result, especially given the importance of gaining more points from their next four games with a top-seven club nowhere in sight.
Like their hosts, clean sheets have not been forthcoming, and that should make for an entertaining encounter on Friday night.
Sampdoria Serie A form:
Spezia Serie A form:
We say: Sampdoria 2-1 Spezia
Despite Spezia sitting higher in the table, you have to take into consideration where their wins have come from. With that in mind, we are backing the home team to edge this contest by the odd goal in three, moving them clear of the relegation zone.