Atalanta vs. Juventus Odds, Picks, Preview: How to Bet the Coppa Italia Final (Wednesday, May 19)

Atalanta vs. Juventus Odds, Picks, Preview: How to Bet the Coppa Italia Final (Wednesday, May 19) article feature image
Credit:

MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Mario Pasalic (R) celebrates with Atalanta’s Aleksey Miranchuk.

  • Atalanta plays Juventus in the Coppa Italia final Wednesday, looking to build on what has already been a successful season for the Bergamo side.
  • Juventus, which has had an uncharacteristically poor season, is at risk of missing the Champions League next season.
  • Anthony Dabbundo explains below why he's backing La Dea despite Juventus having the bigger names and richer history.

Atalanta vs. Juventus Odds

Atalanta Odds +145
Juventus Odds +185
Draw +230
Over/Under 2.5 (-124 / +100)
Day | Time Wednesday | 3 p.m. ET
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Odds updated Wednesday at 11 a.m. ET via DraftKings.

It’s been yet another successful season for Atalanta under manager Gian Piero Gasperini. A top-four finish is all but guaranteed entering Sunday, and his side had previously advanced to the Champions League round of 16. But La Dea want a chance at silverware, and that opportunity will come on Wednesday when they play Juventus in the Coppa Italia final in Mapei Stadium, Sassuolo’s home ground.

Juventus were upset in the CL round of 16 and are on the outside looking in at a potential top-four spot and return to the CL next year. For the Italian giants, it’s been a fall from grace under manager Andrea Pirlo. A cup final is still important to Juve, but making the top four is the bigger priority for a club of its stature and history.

The underlying numbers suggest that Atalanta have been the better team for most of the season, and they are undervalued in my numbers to take home the trophy on Wednesday and finally win silverware under Gasperini.

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Atalanta Rolling on Serie A Hot Streak

Atalanta faced a slow start to the season following a run to the Champions League quarterfinals and excellent end to the Serie A campaign last year. That cost them a chance to keep pace with Inter Milan down the stretch of the title race, but that hasn’t stopped them from crushing Serie A teams, good and bad. Unbeaten in 10 in the league, Atalanta have beaten Juventus and scored 17 in their last five league matches.

There was a fear amongst some, myself included, that they wouldn’t be able to replace the loss of Papu Gomez in January. But Ruslan Malinovskyi has more than made up for Gomez. Gomez was posting excellent progressive passing numbers and 0.5 xG + xA per 90. It wasn’t clear that Atalanta had someone who could do the ball progression and creating for Duvan Zapata, Josip Illicic and Luis Muriel.

As it turns out, Malinovskyi has posted 0.79 xG + xA per 90 in 21 starts and 35 matches played for Atalanta. His emergence has kept the Atalanta train rolling, and he scored the winner off the bench in Bergamo when the two sides met on April 18.

In the seven league matches since then, Atalanta are +9.98 in non-penalty xG difference. No team in the league is even close to them, and Juventus are fifth in the same numbers.

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Juventus Defense Has Faltered Down the Stretch

While Atalanta have rolled to another top-four finish, Juventus have limped in and may miss the CL altogether. Its offense has struggled to consistently generate big scoring chances, and its defense has both regressed and run a bit unlucky with opponents’ finishing.

Juventus haven’t kept a clean sheet in the league since March, going 13 consecutive games without one. The underlying issues are very real once you take out penalties and realize that in the last seven matches, Juve’s opponents have completed more passes in the Juve penalty area than the Old Lady has done in opponent boxes.

Paulo Dybala is likely to start up top with Cristiano Ronaldo, which could help alleviate Juve’s lack of ball progression and chance creation from the middle of the park. At times, it’s been Ronaldo or bust for the attack, which becomes an issue for Juve and its 36-year old striker.

Second-choice keeper and club start Gianluigi Buffon will make his final appearance for the club, but there’s a reason he’s the second choice, and that could hurt them in what should be a tight affair.

Betting Analysis & Pick

The idea that Juventus would be underdogs to Atalanta in a neutral site cup final would have seemed impossible a few years back. It’s a testament to the Bergamo side that they are the best team in Italy in the betting markets and advanced metrics.

Juventus have the history and the bigger names in world football, but the numbers show that Atalanta have been better for each of the last three seasons. La Dea’s attack will find holes in a recently inconsistent Juve defense and lift the Coppa Italia for the first time since 1963.

Pick: Atalanta to lift the trophy

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