SPAL Shock Sassuolo to Continue Their Coppa Italia Dream

After four Coppa Italia Round of 16 games that went more or less according to plans, SPAL pulled off the upset of the week as they stunned Sassuolo at the Mapei Stadium to win themselves a dream Quarter Final against Juventus on January 27.

The last Serie B team still in contention, the Biancazzurri disposed of Roberto De Zerbi’s men with goals from Simone Missiroli and Lorenzo Dickmann. De Zerbi thus lost the battle with his “master” Pasquale Marino – as De Zerbi himself had dubbed Marino as the best coach he had had as a player.

Sassuolo had a better start and went close to break the balance on 23 minutes, when a Filip Djuricic shot crashed against Etrit Berisha’s post. But it was the Serbian midfielder to indirectly cause the Neroverdi‘s demise, as early into the second half he was shown his marching orders by referee Giacomo Camplone for a tackle on Leonardo Sernicola.

An excessive decision perhaps, but the numerical advantage gave SPAL a boost of confidence and propitiated their lead just one minute later. It was Simone Missiroli to score, but much of the credit must go to 19-year-old Senegalese forward Demba Seck, who produced himself in a magic trick to sneak past two of his markers before serving Missiroli an easy chance to finish.

Ten minutes later, Lorenzo Dickmann made it two for SPAL as he made the best out of a Marco D’Alessandro service, taking advantage of the Sassuolo defense’s bad positioning. At that point, the Neroverdi didn’t have the force – and probably neither the willpower – to react and the game slowly progressed towards the end with no additional emotions.



January 14, 2021 – Coppa Italia 2020-21 Round of 16

SCORERS: 49′ Missiroli, 58′ Dickmann

SASSUOLO (4-2-3-1): Pegolo; Muldur, Marlon, Peluso, Rogerio (84′ Kyriakopoulos); Obiang, Lopez (68′ Ayhan); Oddei (68′ Haraslin), Djuricic, Boga (46′ Schiappacasse); Raspadori (Consigli, Turati; Ferrari, Piccinini, Mercati, Magnanelli, Traore, Defrel) Coach: De Zerbi
SPAL (3-4-2-1): Berisha; Spaltro (68′ Ranieri), Vicari (46′ Tomovic), Sernicola; Dickmann, Murgia, Missiroli, D’Alessandro (68′ Sala); Di Francesco (25′ Seck), Floccari; Brignola (90′ Strefezza) (Thiam, Minelli, Esposito, Valoti, Castro, Moro) Coach: Marino

REFEREE: Mr. Camplone from Pescara
NOTES: Yellow Cards: Muldur (Sa); Red Card: Djuricic (Sa)