Previews: Pato on course for Milan return

ROME - Brief news ahead of this weekend's matches in Serie A:

Brazilian Alexandre Pato is on course to return from a thigh injury for second-placed Milan against Napoli at the San Siro on Sunday after resuming training with his team mates this week.

But fellow forward Marco Borriello has suffered flu symptoms and is a doubt for the match, when a win could take Milan top if leaders Inter Milan drop points.

Leonardo's side still have big problems in defence with centre backs Alessandro Nesta, Daniele Bonera and Oguchi Onyewu all unfit.

Third-placed AS Roma are decimated by suspensions for Saturday's home game against Udinese, with midfielders Rodrigo Taddei, Daniele De Rossi and David Pizarro and defender Philippe Mexes all serving one-match bans.

Captain Francesco Totti is still struggling with a knee problem and is not expected to play.

Inter Milan, whose lead has been cut to one point after they won just one of their last six league games, will be without suspended midfielder Sulley Muntari for Saturday's tricky visit to fourth-placed Palermo.

Captain Alessandro Del Piero is tipped to be in fifth-placed Juventus's starting line-up at Sampdoria on Sunday after resting on the bench for most of Thursday's shock 4-1 defeat at Fulham, which ended their Europa League campaign.

Third-choice goalkeeper Antonio Chimenti is likely to play again with Gianluigi Buffon and Alexander Manninger among a long list of players with fitness problems.

Sampdoria, who are one point behind Juve in sixth and in the running for Italy's fourth and final Champions League slot, may have Antonio Cassano back in their starting XI.

The talented forward has made a couple of appearances as a substitute after returning from injury.

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