Giampiero Ventura tried to reassure Torino and Alessio Cerci after a dramatic collapse. “He should be proud.”
The Granata would’ve qualified for the Europa League by beating Fiorentina this evening, but Cerci’s last-gasp penalty was saved in a 2-2 draw.
“Not even the cruellest scriptwriter could’ve come up with this ending. It is part of the Granata DNA, we have to suffer!” Coach Ventura told Sky Sport Italia.
“It has been a very important year, a great season and it’s true we lost the chance to go into Europe over the last two rounds, but we never expected to be in there in the first place.
“A victory would’ve upgraded it to an extraordinary campaign. It would’ve been a return to Europe after 20 years, but also sending out a positive message for the future of this club and Italian football.
“We always played attacking football, focused on young talent and not that long ago we were in Serie B.
“I repeat what I said to the players, which is that defeats are part of the sport. There are seasons that make you proud of what you’ve done. I am proud of the players, I hope they are proud of themselves and the fans are too.”
Cerci was absolutely inconsolable at the final whistle, although Fiorentina forward Giuseppe Rossi was one of the first to reassure him.
“It’s part of football. I’ve seen Roberto Baggio and Franco Baresi crying, so Cerci can too. Only those who don’t dare end up not making mistakes. Cerci should be proud of his extraordinary season, as he turned into a wide striker with goals and assists,” continued Ventura.
“The penalty is part of the game. Anyone who has played football knows penalties can be scored or missed.
“Compliments to Fiorentina for honouring the game and giving a strong response to those who tried to imply they’d lie down.
“I also compliment Parma, as if we had gone into Europe it would’ve been fair and now Parma go through that is fair too. It could’ve gone either way.”