Saturday, 9 May 2009

Serie B - Week 39: Weekend Review

Piacenza 2-2 BariFriday 8 May
Livorno 0-1 Triestina
Third-placed Livorno were beaten at home by play-off chasing Triestina, an outcome that hands Serie B leaders Bari automatic promotion to the top flight. Filippo Antonelli stunned the hosts after just four minutes with a cross that went straight in for the goal that takes them to within three points off a play-off position. With Parma sitting comfortably in second spot, the Amaranto, who poured forward in search of an equaliser, still need to secure their own play-off spot from the three games remaining.

Saturday 9 May
Piacenza 2-2 Bari
Bari went into their clash with mid-table Piacenza on Saturday with their promotion to Serie A already confirmed by Livorno's failure to win 24-hours earlier. The Galletti were in the mood to celebrate and three minutes in Corrado Colombo finished off a wonderful attacking move. The hosts equalised through Mattia Graffiedi's penalty and Jonathan Aspas turned the game around completely in the second half with a wonder goal. Gianluca Galasso ensured Bari's celebrations were not spoilt by snatching a point with a splendid finsih, controlling with the right foot and fire under the bar with his left. Antonio Conte's side will now be looking to wrap up the second division title and prepare for their return to the top flight after eight years away.

[Bari return to Serie A]

Parma 2-0 Pisa
Parma need only one point to mathematically secure an immediate return to Serie A after recording a late win against Pisa. Both sides shared chances in an even first half, but the deadlock was finally broken after 70 minutes when substitute Cristiano Lucarelli met Leon's cross. The Honduran went from an assist to scoring himself as he sealed the three points with a curling free kick with just minutes remaining on the clock. Only an inferior goal difference compared to Livorno can stop the Ducali's automatic promotion, but Francesco Guidolin's side will be confident of picking up the single point they need against Cittadella next week.

Brescia 0-0 Cittadella
Brescia could have gone into third place this weekend, but again failed to make the most of a Livorno stumble. Cittadella came for the point and got it, sitting back to protect themselves in the battle to avoid relegation. Dallamano and Nassi had the only real chances, while Taddei saw red in the final minutes.

Empoli 3-0 Ascoli
Empoli are back on track and comfortably swept Ascoli aside to come within two points of third place. Pozzi was the star of the show with an early brace from Musacci's assist and then on the counter sparked by Flachi. Corvia completed the rout just after the hour mark.

Ancona 2-1 Sassuolo
Sassuolo's play-off march hit the brakes with a shock late turnaround against struggling Ancona, who gave new Coach Sandro Walter Salvioni the best possible debut. Miramontes could've given the home side the lead, but was twice denied by the woodwork early on. Instead Noselli put Sassuolo in front with a fine lob. The final stages was a tale of two goalkeepers, as Bressan misjudged Surraco's chest and volley, then Da Costa saved Manganelli's penalty. It proved decisive, as deep into stoppages Mastronunzio grabbed the winner for Ancona with a left-foot daisy-cutter.

Frosinone 2-0 Albinoleffe
Frosinone picked up important points to stay mid-table and further dent Leffe's play-off ambitions. Carobbio's free kick was palmed out of the bottom corner and an Antonazzo header was denied before Dedic broke his goal drought by sliding on to the end of a counter-attack. Elsneg sealed the scoreline in stoppages by meeting Bocchetti's assist just moments after coming off the bench.

Rimini 2-0 Grosseto
Rimini halted their plummet towards relegation, ending a run of one point from seven rounds, but were aided by a tense Grosseto. Pagano broke through almost immediately by nodding in Vitiello's cross, while the home side also had two goals disallowed in a fiery first half. Grosseto managed to get two players sent off in the space of three minutes, as Freddi's last man foul and a second Gessi bookable offence precluded any comeback. Polito parried La Camera's late penalty, but moments later Pagano completed his brace.

Salernitana 1-0 Avellino
The local derby was a particularly painful one for Avellino, who will need a miracle to avoid relegation now. Merino was kept out by a Pecorari goalline clearance before Ganci's header made the most of a Fatic free kick. Soligo, Merino and Di Napoli had the chances to go 2-0 up, but Ciotola was the only Avellino man to truly test Berni.

Modena 1-0 Mantova
Modena are one of the form sides in Serie B right now and pushed their way past Mantova with their fourth win in the last five games. Handanovic was kept busy by Catellani, Bruno and Troiano, but could do nothing to deny Catellani nine minutes from time. Cristante saw red in stoppages.

Monday 11 May
Treviso 0-1 VicenzaTreviso 0-1 Vicenza
Treviso have been relegated to Lega Pro 1 after losing the Veneto derby 1-0 at home to Vicenza. It has been a dismal season of turmoil for Luca Gotti's men, who had to win to have any chance of survival in Serie B, but they were condemned by a late strike from Stefano Botta that fizzed into the net after an entertaining and frenetic spectacle. The defeat, however, sees the Biancoceleste drop down to the third tier of Italian football just three years after playing in the top-flight.

Source: C4 Football Italia

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