Lega Volley Femminile A1 2023 - News.

Novara Milano 0902

Novara will be looking for a road win to catch Milano on the standings (Photo: LVF)

The main challengers to 2023-2024 Lega Pallavolo Femminile Serie A Tigotà leaders Prosecco Doc Imoco Conegliano, Allianz Vero Volley Milano and Igor Gorgonzola Novara will meet in the most anticipated encounter of the seventh leg of the second round of the regular season this weekend.

Milano, who rank second with 48 points (17 wins), and Novara, who are third with 45 (15 wins), will clash on Saturday, at 21:00 local time (20:00 GMT), at the Allianz Cloud, in Milan, in one of the two matches held on the first day of the weekend.

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Milano are guaranteed to end the weekend in second place, as even if Novara win 3-0 or 3-1 they’d still have more victories than their opponents, but triumphing at home is mandatory if they want to remain on the chase to Imoco, who have 54 points and will face Il Bisonte Firenze on Sunday, at 18:30 local time (17:30 GMT), on the road.

The team of star opposite Paola Egonu, the Italian League’s top scorer with 401 points, also wants to get back to winning ways after seeing their streak of 13 undefeated matches come to an end against Imoco last Sunday.

“This will be a complicated encounter, which comes between a match where we didn’t maintain a solid level of play and the Final Four of the Coppa Italia,” Milano’s head coach Marco Gaspari commented. “But it’s a great opportunity for us to reset after losing to Imoco. We need to learn from the mistakes we made and have a solid display against Novara.”

Novara arrive at Saturday’s encounter with four consecutive victories, the last of which was obtained on Wednesday, against Germany’s VC Wiesbaden, in the semifinals of the CEV Challenge Cup.

The team also strengthened its squad ahead of the final portion of the season, signing 22-year-old Russian outside hitter Marina Markova, who was playing in Türkiye at the start of the season – she won’t be available for selection this weekend yet.

There’s a lot of balance between the two teams historically as Novara won 11 of the previous 21 encounters, just one more than Milano. This weekend’s hosts have, however, been dominant recently, having triumphed in four of the last five duels.

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Scandicci go on the road against Vallefoglia

Fourth-placed Savino Del Bene Scandicci are also interested in the outcome of the match as, with 44 points (15 wins), they could overtake Novara if they drop the game in Milano. Scandicci will play on Saturday as well, going on the road against Megabox Ondulati Savio Vallefoglia, at 18:00 local time (17:00 GMT).