Serie A: Battle For 4th Place And Europa

It's a relegation battle in the top division in England, with five teams battling to stay out of the Championship. In Italy, however, Sampdoria claimed the last relegation spot last weekend, joining Bari and Brescia in Serie B next season. With Milan already capturing the scudetto, and Napoli taking third last weekend with a point against Inter, all that's left is to decide who will be heading to Europe next season.

Italy is smart. Get the meaningless matches out of the way early, and then make the ones that are actually aiming for something play at the same time. Juventus and Roma are both in the hunt for the final Europa League spot, while Lazio and Udinese are battling to clinch the Champions League qualification spot.

Juventus vs. Napoli

This one should be an utter thrill. Napoli secured Champions League football for the first time in 21 years last weekend, and are exhausted from this crazy season. Juventus, meanwhile, just want to get this season over with, and seem to be of the mindset that Europe would cause more harm than good. We would love to say this will lead to a crazy match filled with goal after goal, but we all know that's not going to happen.

AS Roma vs. Sampdoria

Sampdoria clearly have nothing to play for (possibly not even pride, at this point). But Roma are not only trying to salvage a spot in the Europa League - a consolation prize for a club intent on the Champions League - but are anxious to finish above rivals Lazio in the table. Which, in fact, they can do. A home win plus a Lazio loss puts Roma into fifth (based on head-to-head record), pushing Lazio all the way down into sixth.

Lecce vs. Lazio

"Desperate" is likely a fitting way to describe Lazio these days. Remember when they were at the top of Serie A? Yeah, neither do they anymore. Now, not only do Lazio have to win against Lecce, but they need to cross their fingers that Milan don't go easy on Udinese - just a point gives the zebrette fourth. Unfortunately for Lazio, playing for a decisive win does not come naturally. They may have beat Genoa 4-2 last weekend, but default seems to be score a goal and defend the lead until a player is sent off on a straight red. If Lazio keep their heads, they just might sneak back into fourth place.

Udinese vs. AC Milan

Do the world a favor, Milan! Scudetto secured, Coppa final coming up...trot out the players that are on their way out the door and let Udinese run wild. Fans of Serie A aren't quite ready to let go of the tiny wonder-duo of Alexis Sanchez and Antonio Di Natale, so let us have one more match of watching the two seamlessly connect. Toto's set to wrap up the Capocannoniere title for the second straight season, sitting on 28 goals, with his nearest competitor, Edinson Cavani, done for the season. This could be a magical moment for the home side, so don't wreck the party, Milan.

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