Sinisa Mihajlovic’s Sampdoria team are one of the two remaining unbeaten sides in this year’s Serie A, along with Juventus. And it’s not by chance that the Genoese outfit find themselves in third place in the standings on 15 points, a total bettered only by AS Roma and the Bianconeri themselves.
Samp haven’t got to Week 8 of a league season unbeaten since 1990/91, the same year they won their only ever Scudetto. It’s been a master class from the Serbian coach, considering that this time last year Sampdoria had only managed three draws with Delio Rossi at the helm and more or less the same roster.
One of Samp’s most impressive statistics is their goals conceded tally; like the Giallorossi, they’ve been breached just four times. Less encouraging are the nine goals scored so far, five behind the 15 that both Juve and Roma have managed.
Sampdoria’s top scorer this season is Gabbiadini, with four goals. Calcinate, who’s co-owned by Juventus, has tried the most shots on goal with a total of 20. That’s more even than Nainggolan, who leads the way for Roma in this respect with 15 attempts.
The stalwarts of the Genoese side this season have been the goalkeeper Viviano (who will miss the match alongside Cacciatore), defenders Silvestre, De Silvestri and Cacciatore, midfielders Obiang, Palombo and Soriano and strikers Gabbiadini, Okaka and Eder.
Former Roma man Okaka has had the most playing time for Sampdoria so far, with a total of 656 minutes.
Last time out – the 2-2 draw with Cagliari – Sampdoria lined up with a 4-3-3 formation. Viviano manned the posts, De Silvestri, Silvestre, Gastaldello and Cacciatore made up the four-man defense, Palombo, Obiang and Duncan were in midfield and Gabbiadini, Eder and Okaka led the line.