Your Complete Guide To Opening Weekend In Italy's Serie A

Italian football is back!

This weekend, Serie A kicks off following a transfer window that changed the dynamic of the entire league. Former favorites have failed to impress while good investments have helped others emerge as contenders. 

A relatively unassuming first weekend of games gives way to a title fight that has the potential to include as many as five clubs. Relegation will be a trap door that many will need to be aware of, including some relatively big teams. 

There are four timeslots with two games kicking off simultaneously in each on opening weekend, and two more games played on Monday. We've picked one game from each timeslot, and one from Monday, so you can make sure to catch all the best action from Serie A this weekend on Paramount+.

AC Milan vs. Udinese: Saturday, Aug. 13, 12:30 p.m. ET

Milan has followed its title-winning campaign with a rather lacking transfer window. With talent in most positions, depth has not been addressed. The club’s main loss was Franck Kessié, who joined Barcelona, but his replacement is 21-year-old Belgian Charles De Ketelaere, a midfielder with a ceiling as high as they come. 

Besides him, however, reinforcements have been few and far between. Defensively, Milan could be vulnerable, but against Udinese, who finished 12th last season and haven't strengthened much, the Rossoneri should emerge victorious.

Monza vs. Torino: Saturday, Aug. 13, 2:45 p.m. ET

Monza has reached the pinnacle of Italian soccer for the first time in its existence and, under the ownership of Silvio Berlusconi, the intention is to stay. 

Signing a host of top talent could be a genius decision or it could be too much too soon and the team could struggle. Signings like Matteo Pessina, Marlon, Stefano Sensi and Pablo Marí look promising, and an early test against Torino should be a good benchmark. 

Torino has lost several important players this summer, including Bremer, Andrea Belotti and Tomás Rincón. Grande Torino could be in for a difficult season ahead without adequate replacements for its top scorer last season and one of the best defenders in the division. If Monza starts well, this could be an opportunity for an upset.

Cremonese vs. Fiorentina: Sunday, Aug. 14, 12:30 p.m. ET

Despite losing some of the league's biggest stars in recent years — such as Federico Chiesa and Dušan Vlahović to Juventus — Il Viola has been competitive in the league. This season, new addition Luka Jović is a great pick to light up the Serie A. With genuine talent and good direction, the side could make another genuine push for European soccer.

Cremonese is another newly promoted team that's looking to make waves. A laundry list of new signings looks like a great investment, especially with a limited budget, and a win in the early round of the Coppa Italia shows promise, but Fiorentina may be a bit too big of a club for the new Serie A side.

Salernitana vs. AS Roma: Sunday, Aug. 14, 2:45 p.m. ET

Possibly the most exciting side in Italy at the moment, José Mourinho’s Roma has been extremely active in the transfer window and extremely shrewd, getting some great deals done for great prices: Paulo Dybala for free, Nemanja Matić for free, Georginio Wijnaldum on loan and Mile Svilar also for free. After a great campaign last term, a surprise could be in the cards this season. 

Salernitana definitely deserved to go down last season but miraculously stayed up. After massive investment and significant attempts to strengthen, they may just earn it this season. However, against Roma, Franck Ribéry’s side (yup, remember him?) will be heavy underdogs. 

Juventus vs. Sassuolo: Monday, Aug. 15, 2:45 p.m. ET

The match week's final game consists of Juventus and Sassuolo. Juve has shown some intent this summer by picking up Paul Pogba and Ángel Di Maria on free transfers. Bremer in defense and Filip Kostić will also be helpful towards depth but the overall strength is not there. Sassuolo has been a difficult hurdle for Juventus in recent years and this could be a dangerous match for the Bianconeri

Sassuolo is gambling this season, and unfortunately, it doesn’t look promising. A loss to Modena in the first round of the Coppa Italia confirms some suspicion that the side may be in for an immensely difficult season. This summer the club lost Gianluca Scamacca and Jérémie Boga, among a host of other top talents, and has done little to replace them. Loanee Andrea Pinamonti hopes to be the main attacking threat but there's little to prove he can. 

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