We are already halfway through this Serie B 2019-2020 season and after these 19 rounds, we have surely witnessed a number of surprises, together with some more expected results.
But before jumping into the analysis of this first half of the season, let’s have at what happened before outside of the soccer pitches. It is well know that last year, Serie B had an incredibly busy summer as the offseason was full of legal actions, exclusions and more.
This year we are back to normality and there are no weird accidents to report. The league is back to its full capacity of 20 teams, and compared to last year’s 19-teamed tournament, teams do not have a week off.
What happened on the pitch so far
Like every year, Italian Serie B proves to be a tough league to predict and we haven’t recorded a single round without surprises, no matter if small or big.
Despite all of this, league leaders Benevento (coached by Filippo Inzaghi) are marching at a full speed towards winning the tournament and they are doing it at a record pace. No team in the history of the league had ever managed to get 46 points in just 19 games. If nothing extremely unpredictable happens, they should soon manage to get back in Serie A as they are 12 points clear of Pordenone (second ) at the time of writing.
Check the full Italian Serie B table, that’s quite the margin!
Chievo Verona and Empoli
A complete different story is being written for the other two teams that got relegated form Serie A last year: Chievo Verona and Empoli.
Chievo are currently having a season filled with ups and downs and right now are not even in the playoff section of the table, while the Tuscan team (Empoli) are doing even worst and are fighting to avoid relegation despite heavily investing during the summer and winter transfer windows.
Pordenone and Virtus Entella
So, if on one side we have Chievo and Empoli struggling, on the other hand we have two newly promoted teams that are in the top section of the table: Pordenone and Virtus Entella are having a extraordinary season.
The team from Friuli (Pordenone), at their first ever appearance in Serie B, are second, trailing only to unbelievable Benevento and, at the moment, would go directly to Serie A without playing the playoffs!
The Ligurian (Virtus Entella), are playing well (despite a slow down in November) and their fourth place is a direct consequence of this.
The Other Newly Promoted
In a totally different situation we find Trapani, a freshly promoted team that are struggling siting at the second to last place in the standings. The fight to avoid relegation is still long but they need a quick turn in results to stay in this category.
The other two teams that qualified last year from the lower leagues, Pisa and Juve Stabia are just above the relegation zone and need some small improvements be safe with a few weeks margin.
The Rest of the Top Half
Among the remaining teams we want to mention Crotone, that after a tough year where they just avoid relegation, are now third and target Serie A.
Cittadella and Frosinone are both in the top half of the table, but while Cittadella are having a great season and have proved to be a tough opponent to be, Frosinone were expecting to do a little bit better. They have the players to aiming for Serie A, but after some non-convincing performances are now sixth, with Pordenone, second, only two points away.
There are still many games to play and anything can happen.
Team like Spezia, Perugia and Pescara are in line with their respective pre-season expectations, while a struggling Livorno closes the standings with their last place and looks destined for relegation.
What to expect for the rest of the season
The very top of the league
Regarding the final positions in the table, Benevento remains the big favorite for a direct promotion to Serie A, given their 12 point lead on Crotone. The other available spot for direct promotion will be contended till the very end, with Crotone as the slight favorite among the contenders.
The playoff race is, and will be, an open one. Currently eight placed Perugia (27 points) would be the last team to play the playoffs if the season ended now. But they are only 7 points ahead of Cosenza, currently 18th in the standings (first to get relegated).
I hope this gives you an idea of how close the battle in Serie B is!
Frosinone and Chievo Verona should be the two big favorites in this group of playoff contenders.
Relegation battle involves many teams as Trapani and Livorno look desperate at the moment. The other involved teams, and in particular Cosenza, Venezia and Cremonese, will try to avoid relegation and play-outs as well.