Thursday, April 30, 2009

Genoa's Champions League quest starts with Sampdoria

Genoa's returns to the Champions League hunt as Sampdoria visits Stadio Luigi Ferraris Sunday evening. In the midst of a two match losing streak, including last weeks pithy display to relegation threatened Bologna, the Rossoblu have dropped to fifth in the table and showing all the signs of a club stalling out just before the finish line. While supporters will look back fondly to the successes of the campaign, the dropping of the last two matches have been very costly and if reversed could have seen threaten Juventus or AC Milan by seasons-end. However all of that is another tale of the rear-view mirror that need not be discussed and Gian Piero Gasperini must address the final five matches with conviction.

As Genoa learns to fly in European football it must learn to kill off lesser opponents but equally be able to play with a broader verse of styling. The recent dip in form is due to clubs understanding their tactical approach and countering with appropriate measures. With the final five weeks of the campaign if they are to twist the screw and overtake Fiorentina for a spot in the Champions League they will need to play with greater confidence and be able to adjust to rapidly changing environments. On the positive side their remaining schedule is made for a five match undefeated run but first they need to get past Sampdoria.