Toro gear up for promotion push.By: Ben | January 14th, 2011
Torino travel to fourth place Varese tomorrow for what could be an important chapter in the clubs push for Serie A football. After losing in the play-off final last season, Franco Lerda’s men were widely expected to be very strong challengers for this season’s Serie B title. In fact the ‘Granata’ had such a slow start that they spent much of the first three months in the wrong half of the table. Lerda’s remit at the start of the season from owner Urbano Cairo was for a minimum of a play-off place. They currently sit in sixth place (the final play-off spot), two points behind tomorrow’s hosts, the surprise package of Varese.
Varese have just experienced back to back promotions from Serie C2-C1, and then C1-B. A further promotion into the top flight would be the ultimate achievement. Defeat to the ‘Granata’ however, would see Lerda’s men leap frog them into serious promotion challengers. There is now a five point gap from Siena in third to Varese in fourth place. The top three of Novara, Atalanta and Siena are separated by only two points now after the Piedmont based club had a seven point gap at the top going into December. Defeat to Chievo in the Coppa Italia signalled the start of a bad run which has seen Atalanta draw level on points with them. This in turn has given renewed optimism to Franco Lerda’s men as the ‘Granata’ have started to hit better form. This has been helped in large parts by the return to goal scoring form of talisman and skipper Rolando Bianchi who has so far hit eight goals in this campaign, carrying on from the 24 Serie B goals he scored last term. This will give renewed optimism to the Stadio Olympico faithful who are expecting their heroes to go one better this term.
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