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Crotone, Spezia & Benevento All Favored to Be Relegated from Serie A in 2020-21 Season

Benevento practising
Benevento - seen above at their training camp ahead of the new Serie A season - are predicted to go straight back down to Serie B, but have a squad capable of 17th-place or better. Photo by @bncalcio (Twitter).
  • The new Serie A season kicks off this weekend with Fiorentina vs Torino on Saturday, Sep. 19th
  • The three promoted teams – Crotone, Spezia and Benevento – are all favored to be relegated
  • See the odds to finish last in 2021 plus the odds to be relegated for all 20 teams

This weekend is the start of the new Serie A season in Italy, with it all kicking off on Saturday, Sep. 19th, when Fiorentina entertains Torino. Juventus are, once again, favorites to win the title. At the other end of the table, the three teams promoted from Serie B – Crotone, Spezia and Benevento – have the shortest odds to go down.

Serie A 2021  – Odds to Finish Bottom & Get Relegated

Team Odds to Finish Bottom Relegation Odds at DraftKings
Crotone +150 -400
Spezia +160 -400
Benevento +350 -225
Udinese +1600 +250
Genoa +2000 +400
Verona +2500 +500
Cagliari +3000 +500
Parma +5000 +900
Sampdoria +5000 +1100
Torino +6000 +1300
Bologna +8000 +2000
Sassuolo +8000 +2000
Fiorentina +15000 +4000
AC Milan +100000 +50000
Atalanta +100000 +50000
Lazio +100000 +50000
Roma +100000 +50000
Inter Milan +200000 +100000
Juventus +200000 +100000
Napoli +200000 +100000

All odds taken Sept 16.

Benevento to Surprise the Experts?

Of the three promoted teams, last season’s Serie B winners, Benevento, look the most capable of surviving. The Benevento story is an interesting one. “FC Sporting Benevento S.r.l” folded in 2005 due to financial issues; simultaneously, “Benevento Calcio S.p.A.” came into existence. After languishing around the second and third tiers of Italian soccer, the team was promoted to Serie A for a season in 2017-18. Now they’re back for the second time in three years.

Le Streghe dominated Serie B last season, finishing 18 points ahead of second-place Crotone, and hope to draw on their experience. Lorenzo Insigne’s younger brother, Roberto, is in charge and they have the look of a team that’s going hard to stay in the top flight. They spent money over the summer, bringing in Gianluca Lapadula from Genoa and Gianluca Caprari on loan from Sampdoria to help the attack. They could surprise a few.

Tough Times Ahead for Crotone and Spezia

Crotone and Spezia both have very tough campaigns ahead. The fact the season will begin with empty stadiums also counts against them, as newly-promoted teams invariably rely on passionate home support, especially in the first few weeks of the campaign.

For Crotone, this is their third Serie A season,. They were promoted in 2016-17 and survived for one season before going down at the end of 2018-19.

Last season, they finished second in Serie B to Benevento, but boasted the league’s leading goal scorer, Nwankwo Simy. The Nigerian striker found the net 20 times last term and his production will be key to Crotone’s chances of survival.

Ajax defender Lisandro Magallan and Sporting CP midfielder Eduardo Henrique were added to the squad over the summer.

Spezia looks the least well-equipped of the three to survive. After finishing fifth in the regular season, they scraped into Serie A via a playoff, winning promotion for the first time ever when they beat Frosinone.

Their promotion-winning team was largely made up of quality loan signings and they look likely to go down that same route this term, although have already signed Jacopo Sala from SPAL and Albanian international center-back Ardian Ismajli from Hadjuk Split.

Pozzos Under Pressure in Udine

As things stand, Udinese is the most likely to join the promotees in the relegation scrap. They had a difficult 2019-20 season, both on and off the pitch, and there’s a feeling among fans that the owners, the Pozzo family, are directing most of their resources at Watford in the EPL.

They may have a point.

As such, this could be another season of struggle and there’s been little evidence of squad-strengthening other than a couple of loans.

Cagliari, in their centenary year, are at a pessimistic +500 in the relegation odds. Yet, they look to have everything in place to improve upon last season’s 14th-place finish. Manager Eusebio Di Francesco, formerly of Roma, has strengthened the squad considerably over the summer, spending in excess of €24 million.

If things click for Cagliari, they could be closer to a top-half finish than the bottom three.

Unfashionable Verona

Verona, if the odds are to be believed, are also in the relegation mix but this flies in the face of their impressive ninth-place finish last season, which included a win over mighty Juventus.

Although still considered “unfashionable”, this is a club that looks well set for a prolonged stay in Serie A. Some non-expensive but astute summer signings suggest another good season ahead, one based on a sound defense rather than all-out attack.

Prediction: 20th Spezia (+150); 19th Crotone (-400); 18th Udinese (+250)

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