Italian Serie A News, Results, Analysis and Features on Football Soccer

Alex On February - 18 - 2010

AS Roma A Good Bet To End Italian Barren Spell

It is about time an Italian team lifted the Europa League Trophy. Teams from seven different nations have won the UEFA Cup since Parma triumphed in 1999, a barren run that does not reflect the success of Italian clubs in the competition – no country has produced more winners.

Four Serie A clubs reached the last 32 last year, but only Udinese, quarter final losers to Werder Bremen, went any further. Roma and Juventus, who face Panathinaikos and Ajax respectively in the last 32, should improve that record this time around.

The team from the capital are better-placed to go far, represented by the fact they are the current third favourites with the UEFA Europa League betting odds to win the tournament. Roma have never won a major European trophy, having reached the final of both the European Cup and UEFA Cup.

Roma’s reputation as perpetual bridesmaids has been enhanced recently – they have been Serie A runners-up in four of the last six seasons – but this consistency shows they have the pedigree and class to succeed in the secondary European competition.

Claudio Ranieri’s outfit are again second in the race for the Scudetto and are in superb form, having won their last six league matches, taking their unbeaten Serie A run to 14 matches. They have not lost for 20 matches overall, having cruised to the top of their Europa League group.

Panathinaikos are as usual riding high domestically, but they did not convince at times in qualifying losing, losing twice. Betting Europa League experts suggest that Roma, who have not lost to a Greek team in six European matches, should be able to maintain their stunning run and set up a last 16 meeting with either Standard Liege or Red Bull Salzburg.

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