The Derby delle Isole ended in a draw after Cagliari’s last-gasp equaliser finally got the better of Stefano Sorrentino.
This fixture is known as the ‘Derby of the Islands’ and was between two teams battling against relegation. Lorenzo Ariaudo and Nene missed out for the home side, while Santiago Garcia’s ban added to injuries for Abel Hernandez and Andrea Mantovani.
It was an awful month for Gian Piero Gasperini, whose mother died this week just 24 days after his father passed away.
Palermo goalkeeper Stefano Sorrentino made his debut and in the opening minutes needed a fingertip save to deny a rising Mauricio Pinilla strike. Pinilla then nodded a Victor Ibarbo cross over the bar from six yards.
Josip Ilicic put Palermo in front against the run of play, as the Andrea Dossena pass was pulled back from the by-line for him to smash a powerful finish under the bar.
Sorrentino had a busy debut, as he also needed to parry a Marco Sau curler and powerful Daniele Conti free kick.
There had to be a brief break in play so the corner flag could be repaired after Steve Von Bergen went clattering into it.
Mauro Formica made his Serie A debut for Palermo, just days after a transfer from Blackburn Rovers.
Sorrentino was again decisive to fingertip a dangerous Sau lob out from under the bar.
Cagliari were pouring forward throughout the second half and snatched an equaliser in the final minute when Avelar crossed from the left for a towering Thiago Ribeiro header at the back post.
Fabrizio Miccoli and Coach Gasperini were both sent off from the bench for dissent after this goal, as Palermo thought a throw-in during the lead-up had gone the wrong way.
Cagliari now had their tails up and Sau went on the counter-attack, but Von Bergen timed his sliding tackle perfectly.