Soccer Picks & Predictions for Fiorentina vs. Udinese

Nila Amerova

Tuesday, February 11, 2014 1:28 PM GMT

Udinese have the slim edge going into the second leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final clash with Fiorentina. Can they hold on to the lead or will Fiorentina turn the tie in their favour. Here’s a primer on this clash complete with soccer free picks.

Udinese take a 2-1 advantage

Udinese took the first leg of their Coppa Italia clash with Fiorentina 2-1 at Stadio Communale Friuli in Udine. Di Natale opened the scoring for the home side but Fiorentina’s Vargas quickly levelled the score before halftime. The second half was a cautious affair and not until late in the game did Udinese’s Muriel strike to lift Udinese to the crucial 2-1 victory and, consecutively, turning the odds in their favour on the night.

Despite turfing Inter and AC Milan out of the competition and taking the lead in the semis Udinese receive no love from the odds makers. Sent into the first leg to tackle Fiorentina as the +180 underdogs at home, they now enter the second leg as the whopping +450 underdogs to win on the away and even larger +550 underdogs to win the competition proper.

Tale told, Udinese defied the soccer odds. Sportsbooks, though, appear to be adamant they won’t do so again. What do you think?

Udinsese are riding a three-game winning streak into the second leg of their tie and they boast four wins in their last five games across all competitions. The only blemish on their recent stretch was a 1-0 defeat to Parma. Last weekend, in week 23  Serie A betting, they beat Chievo 3-0 at home.

Overall, Udinese’s domestic campaign does leave much to be desired, sat 14th in the table on the back of an 8-2-13 mark, which includes a subpar road mark at 3-1-8. But it’s quite remarkable how form can differ from competition to competition. In Cup action, they are undefeated to date. What’s more, they’ve faced credible Italian opposition in Inter and Milan as well.

Fiorentina home favourites

Despite opening their semi-final clash on a defeat Fiorentina enter the second leg as the firm favourites to win outright at -175 at Bet365. A market stance underscored by their +350 odds to win the competition proper.

A goal-deficit isn’t an insurmountable obstacle. What’s more, having the away goal as well could prove deciding in the event of a 2-2 draw on aggregate.

Fiorentina’s enjoying a positive campaign in Serie A; they are fourth in the table, just three points shy of Napoli, with a 13-5-5 mark and 44 points. Crucially, they’ve only lost one match at home this season – 7-3-1 at home, highlighted by 25 goals scored and 15 conceded.

That said Fiorentina’s path to the semis was rather straightforward with wins over lightweights Chievo and Siena. As well, they were tipped the favourites at +150 to beat their Udine rivals only to fall short despite dominating large portions of the game and creating more scoring opportunities.

Fiorentina recently ended a winless run of form with a victory over Atalanta in week 23 Serie A betting, a promising result that should send them into their Coppa Italia clash with confidence and optimism. It remains to be seen whether they’ll deliver on expectations however.

Soccer Betting Verdict: Udinese have been persistently disadvantaged in Coppa Italia betting markets but they’ve somehow managed to turn the odds in their favour. That counts for something and makes them dangerous floaters. Let’s not forget they do have the lead in this tie so they could very well prove to be the value soccer pick at +450 to win outright. In fact, given their lead one could argue their odds do seem rather long.

Fiorentina are responsible in more ways than one for the pessimistic outlook on Udinese’s chances. Home form is solid as well as league form. What’s more, they have the away goal to rely on as well as home advantage for this pivotal reverse. The sum of all these advantages sums up to fancied odds of -175 at Bet365 that can’t be overlooked.

Soccer Free Picks: Fiorentina to win outright at -175