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Jan 23, 2022 at 2pm UK
Sanabria (16')
Mandragora (62'), Bremer (64'), Pobega (75'), Juric (81')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Raspadori (88')
Rogerio (51'), Scamacca (63'), Frattesi (86')

Preview: Torino vs. Sassuolo - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Torino vs. Sassuolo - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's Serie A clash between Torino and Sassuolo, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Having propelled themselves into contention for an unlikely European place, Torino aim to continue their fine form at the expense of Sassuolo on Sunday, sitting three points above their visitors in the standings.

As the Granata have won their last two games - amid a spell of four wins from five in Serie A - they will now seek a third straight top-flight victory for the first time since September 2019.

Match preview

Following their 2-1 triumph over Sampdoria last Saturday, Torino have now accumulated more than 30 Serie A points at this stage of a season for just the second time since the turn of the century.

Indeed, by securing a win over Sassuolo this week, Ivan Juric's side would surpass the club's best tally after 22 matches during that period, and all recent portents point towards them being up to the task in hand.

Without missing a beat, the Granata returned from COVID-19 disruption to thump in-form Fiorentina 4-0, before travelling to Marassi five days later and inflicting yet another defeat on struggling Samp, who then dismissed coach Roberto D'Aversa and replaced him with ex-Toro boss Marco Giampaolo.

Their only losses since the end of November have been at the hands of their latest league victims in the Coppa Italia and reigning champions Inter. An otherwise excellent series of results have confirmed Torino as a force to be reckoned with under Juric, and any concerns about demotion have been replaced by optimism - with a top-half finish in their sights.

Such improvement has been largely built upon defensive organisation instilled by their Croatian coach, and only Inter and Napoli have conceded fewer goals than their 20 to date.

Now returning to their Turin headquarters - where they have won seven of 11 matches this term - Torino will be further buoyed by a record of just one loss in their last 11 league meetings with Sassuolo, winning both of the last two including September's reverse fixture.

Last weekend aside, Sassuolo have enjoyed a positive start to the new year, with Coppa Italia progress secured with Thursday's 1-0 win over Cagliari.

Their only reverse since returning from the winter break came in a 4-2 home defeat to mid-table rivals Verona just a few days before, and though the Neroverdi managed to score twice themselves, they conceded each time they looked like getting back into the game - with an Antonin Barak hat-trick proving decisive for their visitors.

Though they may have been inconsistent this term, Sassuolo have certainly not lacked a goal threat, boasting an exciting strikeforce packed with in-form Italy internationals.

In all, the Emilian side have scored in each of their last 16 away matches in Serie A, representing the second-longest streak in the top five European leagues after Bayern Munich's incredible 43.

Not only that, but Alessio Dionisi's men have registered as many as 38 goals after 22 top-flight fixtures for the first time in their history. However, they have also conceded 37 - their worst return at this stage since 2014.

Twelfth in the table before embarking on their trip to Turin, Sassuolo and their admired attacking trident are set to face one of their toughest tests against an resolute home side which held them goalless in a 1-0 loss when the sides last met.

Torino Serie A form:
  • D
  • W
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W

Torino form (all competitions):
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • W

Sassuolo Serie A form:
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • L

Sassuolo form (all competitions):
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • W
  • L
  • W

Team News

Still out of action with a hamstring injury sustained before the winter break, Torino's star striker Andrea Belotti joins recent signing Mohamed Fares on the sidelines this week, while Nigeria full-back Ola Aina remains in Cameroon pursuing AFCON glory.

Ivan Juric has few other absentees, though, ahead of Sunday's game, as Antonio Sanabria continues to deputise for Belotti at the apex of a 3-4-2-1 formation. Former Sassuolo striker Simone Zaza - who bagged a brace against his old club last March - is available to make an impact from the bench.

The hosts' coach is expected to bring Kofi Djidji into the back three, but his starting XI may otherwise remain unchanged from that which beat Sampdoria last weekend.

Sassuolo, meanwhile, will welcome back captain Domenico Berardi following suspension, and the Azzurri star has been directly involved in as many goals as any other player in the top five European leagues since November - a total of 12: six goals and six assists. Indeed, Berardi has also had a hand in five goals in his last six Serie A meetings with Torino.

Following a careless handball which proved pivotal in the loss to Verona, Vlad Chiriches could make way for Kaan Ayhan in defence, while Maxime Lopez and veteran goalkeeper Andrea Consigli are set to return having been rested for the cup tie in midweek.

Due to injury, Filip Djuricic, Hamed Traore and Henrique are still unavailable to Alessio Dionisi.

Torino possible starting lineup:
Milinkovic-Savic; Djidji, Bremer, Rodriguez; Singo, Lukic, Mandragora, Vojvoda; Praet, Brekalo; Sanabria

Sassuolo possible starting lineup:
Consigli; Toljan, Ayhan, Ferrari, Rogerio; Frattesi, Lopez; Berardi, Raspadori, Kyriakopoulos; Scamacca

We say: Torino 1-1 Sassuolo

Though Sassuolo have not drawn any of their last eight league matches at Stadio Olimpico di Torino, that statistical quirk may be ironed out on Sunday, as the sides play out a low-scoring draw.

In those last eight Turin clashes, 31 goals have been scored by the teams in total - at a rate of nearly four per match - but Torino are a sterner proposition these days and will withstand the visitors' versatile attack.

Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data

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