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Serie A Betting Odds, Picks & Predictions: Atalanta vs. Inter Milan (Sunday, Nov. 8)

Credit:

Henning Bagger/Ritzau Scanpix/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Duvan Zapata and Alejandro Gomez.

Atalanta vs. Inter Milan Odds

Atalanta Odds +180 [BET NOW]
Inter Milan Odds +123 [BET NOW]
Draw +280 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 3.5 (-104/-121) [BET NOW]
Time Sunday, 9 a.m. ET
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Atalanta welcome Inter Milan to Bergamo for a big matchup on Sunday morning in Serie A. Both clubs are dealing with some significant injuries and unexpectedly poor form. This feels like a match where three points are needed by both sides, and I would usually expect we see some goals.

After all, it is an Atalanta game.

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Atalanta

Atalanta are going through a bit of a rough patch at the moment. Before beating newly promoted Crotone last weekend, they lost back-to-back Serie A games rather convincingly to Napoli (4-1) and Sampdoria (3-1). Combine those results with a Champions League draw vs. Ajax and a 5-0 loss to Liverpool (both of which came at home) and some might be ringing the alarm bell.

I’m not quite there yet, but I am growing more concerned about their ability to balance fixtures in Italy and the Champions League. Against Inter Milan, Atalanta will be without midfielders Robin Gosens and Marten de Roon. Right-back Hans Hateboer did not train on Friday either.

Atalanta were without some players for the Liverpool match, and their midfield struggled. Manager Gian Piero Gasperini has made comments about giving the defense more support after recent struggles. The injuries and the comments from the manager are not making me super confident to back them against Inter.

From an expected goals (xG) perspective, the results aren’t quite as bad as it looks. The Sampdoria loss was strange, but Atalanta were rotating players and came out about even (2.1-2.5).


Expected goals (also known as xG) is an advanced statistic that gives an indication of whether results are based on sustainable factors like a steady creation of scoring chances, or whether it is down to aspects such as luck or outstanding goalkeeping.


The 2-1 win over Crotone should have been by more, according to the xG data (3.50-0.52). The Liverpool defeat was a poor, surprising performance, but the xG wasn’t as bad (1.16-2.53). For the season, Atalanta are still generating 2.37 xG per game (second in Serie A) while only conceding 1.24 per game (surprisingly fifth).

For the long haul, I am still very bullish on Atalanta. Their lethal finishing has just taken a pause for a few games, but I expect that to return. However, the injuries and squad rotation are a concern for me in the short term. It sounds like Gasperini might play this game closer to the vest based on some of his comments. Because of that, I think we could see a different Atalanta side on Sunday.

Inter Milan

The Nerazzurri have been a very frustrating team so far this season. It feels like they have not taken advantage of significant opportunities in the final third, where they are likely going to be without striker Romelu Lukaku, but I’m in wait and see mode on his status.

Due to some of Atalanta’s injuries, I think Inter’s midfield has the opportunity to control the flow of this match. Atalanta could play a little less of an open game, which would potentially limit Inter’s best scoring chances.

Manager Antonio Conte’s side has disappointed thus far this season, earning 11 points from six games in Serie A and just two points from three Champions League matches. This is a game they need to win, and I would expect an effort that would reflect that.

From an xG perspective, Inter have significantly underperformed their underlying data thus far. Losing 3-2 to Real Madrid when xG was 1.17-0.68 is not horrible, but that could have been a draw. Having an xG differential of +1.88 and +2.06 in their two Champions League draws and not winning either match is pretty rough, though.

In Serie A, we’ve seen similar results. A 2-2 draw against Parma at home is unacceptable, but they had an xG differential of +2.29. Having three draws when you have close to a plus-2.0 expected goal differential is pretty crazy. They are not being clinical enough in the final third, and that needs to improve quickly.

Betting Analysis

It pains me to say this, but I lean toward the under here. I bet Atalanta overs automatically usually, as they have hit in eight of nine matches this season including Champions League. Inter, on the other hand, have not been as much of an over team, going over a 3.5 total in four of nine games.

Atalanta’s injuries, as well as Gasperini’s comments about needing to help out the defense more, would concern me on the over. Coupled with Inter not finishing enough of their chances, and under 3.5 at -121 seems like it is the right bet. I will also play Atalanta +0.25 at -124. Without Lukaku, I think Inter are a step down from their usual selves. Also, I think this could be a draw so +0.25 has some value.

Picks: Under 3.5 (-121) | Atalanta +0.25 (-124)

[Bet Atalanta-Inter Milan now at DraftKings and get a $1,000 sign-up bonus.]

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