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The Action in Serie A returned this weekend and both Genoa clubs, it was mixed fortunes as Sampdoria drew away 0-0 at Chievo and Genoa lost 1-0 at home to Cagliari.

Before there relegation game away at Chievo, Bookmakers suspended betting on the game. Reports showed that suspicions were raised after large amounts of bets were placed on the draw. Guess what the outcome was a 0-0 draw. The Italian football authorities are also investigating the matter after there were large amounts of bets on the draw taking place. There were reports that a handful of bookies pricing the draw as low as 1.38. A draw on bets like this will be priced at 3.0 or bigger. Two websites - 32red and Betfair - were offering 1.36 and 1.62 on the game.

The game itself it did turn out to be a turgid 0-0 draw as both teams had difficulty breaking down each other and it lingered into a dour 0-0. After four successive defeats Samp had Nicola Pozzi and Angelo Palombo return from injury to bolster up the midfield and attack. The absentees for Sampdoria included the injured Franco Semioli and the suspended Fernando Tissone. Also once again there was no room for the on loan striker from Manchester United Federico Macheda.

There was only two worth pieces of action in the first half as firstly for Sampdoria as Daniele Gastaldello wasted a free header at the back post from a Angelo Palombo corner. At the other Chievo Sergio Pellissier’s downward header from a Kevin Constant cross just went wide of Gianluca Curci upright.

It didn’t really get any better in the second half as Chievo switched from a four man back line to a 3 man back line. Sampdoria then wasted 2 chances as a Daniele Mannini snap shot was charged down by Davide Mandelli. Then sub Jonathan Biabiany had his glancing header from a Angelo Palombo free kick just go past the post and past Stefano Sorrentino outstretched palm.

Not a game to watch to be honest and it shows how badly Sampdoria are struggling in 2011. Selling your two best players to both Milan clubs in Cassano (Milan) and Pazzini (Inter) and replacing them with Massimo Maccarone and Federico Macheda is not good business. Sampdoria are missing a fire power up front and also missing a creative player in the midfield which Antonio Cassano was a creative link from the midfield to the attack. I won’t be surprised if we Sampdoria slide in to the depths of Serie B next season.

It didn’t fair worse for Genoa as they were surprised 1-0 at home at the Marrassi by an improved Cagliari side under the leadership of Roberto Donadoni. The only goal of the game came after fifteen minutes and it was Robert Acquafresca with the goal. Davide Biondini shot turn cross found Acquafresca to head home from six yards out. Genoa were completely out played in the game and were lucky not to loose by even more as Cagliari wasted chance after chance without capitalising. Simone Missiroli glancing header hit the crossbar. As Cagliari dominated in the second half, Genoa missed a late chance and had a goal disallowed. Firstly Rodrigo Palacio fired wide from an angle drive. Then Antonio Floro Flores thought he equalised from a Rafinha free kick but it was disallowed as Floro Flores was in a offside position.

There has been some transfer rumour news that has broken out in the Sun newspaper in the UK that Genoa are one of a few clubs that are interested in Manchester United striker Dimitar Berbatov. It has been reported that both Genoa and Juventus have contacted Manchester United over the availability of the Bulgarian International. Berbatov is Manchester United top goal scorer with twenty goals this season but has lost his place recently to Javier Hernandez. Genoa are willing to pay around £9m for the striker a snippet of the £30.75m that Manchester United paid back in the summer of 2008.

Genoa Domenico Criscito has revealed that both Milan clubs in January made offers for him, but insisted he turned down the offers to stay in Genoa. The Italian full back who has been one of Genoa best performers in a struggling side has attracted the big clubs in Italy. Criscito told Sky Sport Italia “I found that Inter and Milan made me offers in January, but while I continue to wear the Genoa shirt, I will do my best to honour the club colours. Genoa only gained the full rights to Criscito contract in the summer of 2010 from Juventus after a successful co-ownership deal.

Up next for Sampdoria is a must must must home game in another relegation six pointer against Lecce. For Genoa they have a tricky away lunch time kick off on the Sunday at Juventus.

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Scot Munroe

A Football fan for around 18 years since the age of 6 years old. My first love is Swindon town now managed by the mad man that is Paolo Di Canio. I have been a fan of Italian football for around 10-15 years now since the Channel four days back in the Uk with James Richardson. I am a Roma fan as well and i have been following the club since 2003 with the attack minded football with Totti and Cassano.

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