The 5th round of Serie B offered a sneak preview of the teams that are seriously thinking about the great jump to the Serie A, despite the results rebalanced the distances between them. The same is for the opposite part of the standing, where eight teams fit in an interval of 3 points. While it is still premature to make forecasts, it is already clear that the clash on both endings will be as tough as balanced until the last round.
Leading the escalate to the top-level championship is Frosinone, which achieved an away victory on Ascoli’s pitch at the very last minute. However, runners-up do not surrender easily: Empoli nabbed an away success against Parma, which wasted the chance to avoid the defeat by missing a penalty in the final part of the match. Perugia collected their first defeat against a brave but lucky Palermo, and must now share the third place with Carpi, which was overwhelmed in the home match with Foggia. In the run for play-off spots, Avellino and Venezia neutralized each other in Monday’s match, while Cremonese surrendered to Bari.
Another disappointment came from Pescara. The team led by Zdenek Zeman collected the third consecutive draw, suffering once again a comeback from the opponent team. Entella needed just five minutes right before the end of the match to destroy the Delfino dreams.
Brescia also collected another draw, the second in a row and the second without scoring any goal, this time against Ternana.
In the fight to avoid relegation, Foggia earned some fresh air winning on Carpi’s pitch, but it’s still tied at the fifth from last spot with Salernitana, which had some hard time and earned only one point against the bottom of the class, Pro Vercelli.
In a match dominated by the neopromossa Venezia, corner kicks were the main feature of the night. Filippo Inzaghi’s team attacked continuously, opening the match with Stefano Moreo, who was served by Leo Stulac and scored with a powerful header in the 80th minute. The match seemed to be closed but a brave reaction from Avellino allowed them to score the equalizer, with an exact copy of Moreo’s goal, but from the opposite corner flag. A cross by Lorenzo Laverone, then a header by Angelo D’Angelo in the very last minute, and the Wolves saved the match.
Ascoli Picchio-Frosinone 0-1
Despite the result, Ascoli deserved more from a match that they dominated for more than one hour. Several chances from the white and black team were either stopped by Massimo Zappino, Frosinone’s goalkeeper in a great shape, or miserably wasted with unforgivable mistakes. Frosinone tried to scare the Woodpecker in a few occasions, but the corner kicked by Camillo Ciano resulted lethal after Emanuele Terranova diverted it in the goal with a smooth header.
People sitting on the bleachers of San Nicola Stadium must have enjoyed their time watching this entertaining and nervous match. Counterattacks from both sides contributed to keep the bar of tension high, as fouls and yellow cards grew in number. Fabio Grosso’s guys must thank a wonderful shot outside the box by Riccardo Improta at 72’, freed by a precise pass by Franco Brienza.
It started as everybody had predicted, but it ended up in a fiasco. Carpi took the lead after nine minutes with Jerry Mbakogu, who freed himself from Michele Camporese, and scored alone in front of Enrico Guarna. Although Carpi led for the whole first half, Foggia came back on the pitch with a different spirit, and made it clear already four minutes in to the second half. As a blundering corner kick unfolded, Luca Martinelli managed to find the right spot in the goal and scored the equalizer. At 65’, great one-two between Fabio Mazzeo and Roberto Floriano right outside the top right corner of the box. Floriano serves Cosimo Chiricò, who had just joined the match one minute earlier, for the goal that flips the result. Finally, it’s up to Giacomo Beretta to close the match: The Satanelli‘s attacker runs 20 meters through the midfield, dribbles Alessio Sabbione and shoots the ball past a blameless Simone Colombi.
A one-way match at the Piercesare Tombolato Stadium of Cittadella. Roberto Venturato’s guys started scoring already in the 8th minute, when Cesena defenders lost the ball right in front of their keeper, and Andrea Schenetti could serve Cristian Kouame, who easily defeated Andrea Fulignati. Alessandro Salvi scored the second goal after Fulignati – the best among Cesena, even if he had to concede four goals – bounced back a penalty kicked by Gianluca Litteri. Kouame came back on the score sheet thanks to Andrea Settembrini, who served him in the middle of the box, right in front of the goalkeeper for the easiest of goals. Manuel Iori closed the match in the 79th minute, scoring a penalty earned by Litteri. Cesena saw the echoes of their great victory against Avellino fading away, and the next match against Ascoli sounds already like a play-out, while Venturato’s team sent a clear message to Empoli.
Seven yellow cards and one red card clearly define this match as the roughest of the round. That was predictable from the eve, since both teams are aiming at Serie A.
Palermo could claim their victory thanks to a penalty scored by Ilija Nestorovski at 81’. Until that minute, both Perugia – especially in the first half – and Palermo – more dynamic in the second part of the game – had shown their commitment to their objective. A hand touch by Santiago Colombatto changed the result of a match that seemed to be fated to end without goals. And, perhaps, that would have been a fairer outcome.
Hard times for Parma, that collected the third consecutive defeat against a great Empoli. The cherry on top was Francesco Caputo, who had been in the sight of Parma for the whole transfer market period, and scored the first goal against the Crociati, shooting outside the box right into the top corner, where Pierluigi Frattali couldn’t reach it.
Parma didn’t want to surrender and, as the second half started, Alessandro Lucarelli scored with a header from a corner. No time for celebration, though, because Empoli took the lead again two minutes later, from a corner as well, this time with Lorenco Simic.
Three minutes later, Parma got a superb chance to score the equalizer, but Manuel Nocciolini missed a penalty, stopped by the excellent Ivan Provedel.
If Parma want to be in the race for promotion, they better change their trend and give their best in the next away match against Venezia.
After Frosinone and Salernitana, it was Entella’s turn to take advantage of Pescara’s generosity. As a matter of fact, the Delfino suffered the third comeback in the last three rounds. Pescara started with a wonderful goal by Christian Capone, who shot from 25 meters right into the top corner of the goal defended by Alessandro Iacobucci. In the second half, Gaston Brugman extended the Biancazzurri lead, with another shot from the distance. The Marco Mazza Stadium was already celebrating the victory when the whole Pescara defence fell asleep, and left Davide Luppi alone and free to score the 2-1. Five minutes later, Davide Diaw scored the equalizer and gave Entella a golden point.
Pro Vercelli-Salernitana 1-1
Both teams are fighting to avoid relegation, as one could tell from the passion that they showed while playing this match. Pro Vercelli took the lead with Marco Firenze, who finalized a precise assist from Filip Raicevic. In the second half, Raffaele Schiavi went for a header from a corner kicked by Luigi Vitale, to set the result. A draw that doesn’t make any team happy, and postpones their fight to the next round.
Despite the result was set at the 12th minute by Guido Marilungo from a corner, the rest of the match provided intense emotions, especially from Novara’s side. The Gaudenziani tried to score the equalizer for the whole second half, but had not taken into account the formidable shape Raffaele Di Gennaro was in. Spezia’s goalkeeper saved the result in countless occasions, especially at 63’, when he stopped Novara’s strikers three times in a single action.
Ternana – Brescia (Suspended)
The match was suspended at the 20th minute because of a severe storm that flooded the pitch and made it unusable. The new match date, when the remaining 70 minutes will be played, has yet to be decided.