Sunday, 3 June 2007

Serie B Wk 41: Review

Sunday 3 June
Bari 1-0 Juventus
Following Didier Deschamps’ shock resignation, Juventus assistant manager Giancarlo Corradini made his debut as a senior Coach, taking over for the final two rounds of the season. With the Serie B title assured and so many stars away on international duty, the side was packed with youth team players. Trezeguet’s lob hit the back of the net but was ruled offside and Ganci fired over from distance in a soporific first half.

It was Bari who broke through after the restart with the first real scoring opportunity. Substitute Carozza ran down the left flank and crossed low for a simple Carrus tap-in. Moments later Mirante’s reflexes prevented Santoruvo from netting a second from point-blank range and Bari felt they deserved a penalty for Zalayeta’s handling offence. Instead the referee pointed to the spot and dismissed Legrottaglie – who was born near Bari – for a foul on Santoruvo. Ganci stepped up and saw his penalty saved by Mirante.

Arezzo 0-0 Modena

Both sides are still in the race to avoid Serie C after sharing the points in Tuscany. Campedelli and Pinardi had the best chances for the visitors, while Arezzo threatened with Martinetti’s lob, Floro Flores and a Barbagli header. Despite Terra’s harsh red card for an elbow on Sforzini, Modena could not break through

Bologna 2-1 Crotone
Bologna fought back in their final home game of the season to keep their play-off hopes alive. Soviero denied two early Marazzina efforts and it was already relegated Crotone who took a surprise half-time lead at the Dall’Ara with Espinal taking advantage of a Terzi howler. The Rossoblu have been on poor form of late, but got back on the field with renewed vigour. Marazzina finally beat Soviero with a right-foot volley and, despite the goalkeeper’s best efforts on a Daino header, substitute Scarzanella could do nothing when Filippini got on the end of a corner kick

Cesena 0-1 Verona
Verona pick up three precious points, but despite the defeat Cesena are still mathematically safe. Hellas were in dire straits going into this game and pushed forward from the start with Ferrarese and then Ferrante converting a penalty for Caridi’s handling offence. Pelle was Cesena’s liveliest figure, hitting the crossbar after 25 minutes. Ferrante nodded over and Babu’s goal was disallowed before Danucci’s dismissal for two bookings in quick succession

Frosinone 2-0 Albinoleffe
Frosinone salute the home fans with a victory that secures Serie B safety for the club that had never before reached this level. Margiotta’s header skimmed the woodwork before Lodi thumped in Galasso’s assist with his right foot to open the scoring. Colombo saw red for two yellow cards on the stroke of half-time, making it an even more one-sided affair than it already was. Margiotta set up Castillo for the second goal of the match, sparking celebrations among the Frosinone supporters.

Mantova 1-0 Genoa
A victory at the Stadio Martelli today would automatically send Genoa into Serie A, but Mantova were still in the hunt for a play-off place and grabbed a shock win despite playing the final 35 minutes with 10 men. Leon’s free kick skimmed the upright and later brought a tough save out of Brivio, but on the stroke of half-time Rubinho required a fantastic block to deny Sommese’s fierce strike.

Mantova were reduced to 10 men following Mezzanotti’s elbow on Leon and it was one-way traffic from there on in. Di Vaio fired Leon’s cross wide with only the ‘keeper to beat, Criscito went on a solo run that was finally palmed away and Adailton proved his injury worries are behind him with a smashing volley charged down by Doga. It was a siege with De Rosa, Gasparetto and Adailton shooting from all angles. However, deep into stoppages Tarana unleashed a rocket from 30 metres that squirmed under Rubinho’s body to give Mantova an unexpected victory.

[Genoa & Napoli set up promotion showdown]

Napoli 1-0 Lecce
Napoli win this match, but it is not enough to ensure mathematic promotion. Play-offs are not necessary if the third team has an advantage of 10 points or more from the fourth side, but with Piacenza’s victory at Vicenza it means the final round against Genoa will be decisive. Over 60,000 fans packed into the Stadio San Paolo and after Bogliacino’s header was just wide, Calaiò made his mark seven minutes in by nodding Rullo’s cross under the bar. Calaiò had another good chance, as did Sosa, before Rosati parried Bogliacino’s header from close range. Lecce gave Napoli a scare 15 minutes from time when Vives’ cross-shot thumped the crossbar, but moments later Sosa did the same at the other end by getting on to De Zerbi’s free kick. Sosa turned another header off target and De Zerbi’s audacious lob failed to find the net.

[Genoa & Napoli set up promotion showdown]

Pescara 1-3 Brescia

Pescara are already doomed to the drop and it was easy to see why, as Brescia steamrollered the Stadio Adriatico in the hunt for a play-off place. Possanzini took just nine minutes to break through and Santacroce was quickest to react to a corner kick for their second. Serafini scored a bizarre goal after the break. Amadio parried Possanzini’s effort straight on to the Brescia man’s nose, seeing the ball ricochet into the net without him knowing much about it. At least Martini saved face with his ninth strike of the season, tapping in at the death.

Spezia 1-2 Treviso
Treviso will play in Serie B again next season, but the situation remains sticky for Spezia. Giugou had a goal disallowed in the first half for a push in the wall to clear a path for his free kick, but all the action came in the space of 10 minutes. Russotto’s left-foot drive gave the visitors the lead only for Colombo to equalise moments later by nodding in Guzman’s centre. The game was wide open, but Guigou floated in a corner for Fava’s winner.

Triestina 1-1 Rimini
Rimini are still in the play-off race and this point also takes Triestina closer to safety. Defender Pivotto had a couple of early opportunities for the home side, but Rimini came out of their shells towards half-time and took the lead with Pagano’s left-foot daisy-cutter. Ricchiuti brought a difficult save out of Rossi moments later, but they were reduced to 10 men for Valiani’s straight red card following a foul on Rossetti. Triestina took advantage of the situation and substitute Graffiedi got his head to Marchesetti’s cross. Matri could still have won it for the visitors, but could not keep his counter-attack on target.

Vicenza 1-2 Piacenza
Piacenza’s victory at the Stadio Menti has a huge knock-on effect for the rest of Serie B. By keeping the gap down between themselves and the leading three, this result prevents Napoli and Genoa from direct promotion, so it all goes down to the wire and play-offs are a distinct possibility. The play-offs are only required if the gap between third and fourth is less than 10 points.It had not started at all well for Piace, as after Rantier thumped the upright, Schwoch got to the by-line to set up Foti’s tap-in. The second half had barely kicked off when Rantier got past Zancopè at the second attempt, then both teams had a man sent off, Crovari and Iorio seeing red in a tense encounter. The match was decided eight minutes from time, as substitute Simon’s angled drive snatched victory for Piacenza within seconds of stepping on to the field. However, Vicenza came so very close to giving Napoli and Genoa their ticket to Serie A when Paonessa struck the upright in stoppages.

[Genoa & Napoli set up promotion showdown] - [Promotion/Relegation as it stands] - [Week 42 Permutations]

Source: C4 Football Italia

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