Pescara have saved Coach Giovanni Stroppa’s job with a hard-fought victory over Parma thanks to Elvis Abbruscato and Vladimir Weiss.
The Ducali were in seventh place after three consecutive victories, but had to do without Amauri, Fabiano Santacroce, Daniele Galloppa and the suspended Ishak Belfodil, so Dorlan Pabon was given a rare start in attack. Giovanni Stroppa acknowledged he was at the last chance saloon after President Daniele Sebastiani warned failure to get a result here would see him sacked. Simone Romagnoli and Giuseppe Colucci sat out bans with the injured Christian Terlizzi and Alessandro Crescenzi, so Pescara switched Juan Fernando Quintero to a trequartista role. Vladimir Weiss was surprisingly left on the bench.
Bad news straight away for the Delfini, as Manuele Blasi limped off clutching his thigh to make way for Nielsen. Pabon got to the by-line to pull back a cross-field pass and Pescara were fortunate the assist was intercepted before it could reach Aleandro Rosi in the middle.
Moments later Pescara should’ve taken the lead, as a corner was deflected into the path of Marco Capuano, but the Under-21 international defender ballooned over the bar on the volley from seven yards.
Quintero curled a couple of free kicks just wide of the upright and Elvis Abbruscato only grazed a corner at the near post for what would’ve been a free header.
Pabon turned his marker in midfield on 33 minutes to smash a fierce right-foot strike inches past the far post. Parma wasted an absolutely golden opportunity. Biabiany sprung the offside trap and took advantage of Mattia Perin’s mistimed rush off his line, but Uros Cosic got back in time for a goalline clearance, as the Frenchman tried to steer it in from a tight angle rather than roll across for teammate Pabon.
Pescara also threatened just before the break, as Abbruscato dribbled past Alessandro Lucarelli to reach the by-line and the pull-back for Quintero was crucially intercepted in the six-yard box for another corner. Pabon turned a defender, but the angle was too narrow and he could only hit the side-netting.
With the final kick of the first half, Emanuele Cascione got in front of his man to chest down a cross, but could not keep the shot down as he slipped.
The Delfini broke the deadlock – and their four-game goal drought – straight after the restart. Gabriel Paletta allowed a long ball to go past him, but Abbruscato was more alert and took advantage to smack an angled drive past Antonio Mirante. He showed just what it meant to the team by sprinting to whip off his shirt in front of the curva.
Parma fought back immediately and Perin flew to palm a Lucarelli header away with one strong hand, but Abbruscato’s overhead kick was straight at the goalkeeper.
Pabon’s header floated across the face of goal and just past Biabiany for what would’ve been an easy tap-in. Massimo Gobbi sprung the offside trap down the left when completely forgotten by the Pescara defence, but his shot on the volley was well captured by Perin at the near post.
The Ducali were pouring forward, but Rosi couldn’t keep his header on target under pressure from Francesco Modesto, while Biabiany also nodded wide. Substitute Weiss nearly made it 2-0 for Pescara, though, as his screamer sailed just over the bar.
Musacci and Marco Parolo powerful long-range efforts went wide and Mirante had to sprint out of his box to clear from Abbruscato on the counter.
At the 91st minute Musacci unleashed another absolute blockbuster from 20 metres and Perin got a fingertip to turn it on to the crossbar.
Parma were completely unbalanced looking for an equaliser, but it left huge gaps at the back and Weiss took full advantage. The former Manchester City midfielder ran on to a smart backheel in midfield and surged forward to beat Mirante with a strike that went in off the inside of the upright.