Cagliari fought back for an opening weekend victory over Atalanta, but it was a dramatic game with both sides hitting the woodwork.
The Sardinians now have Diego Lopez as their main Coach following his co-operation with Ivo Pulga. He was forced to make adjustments, as Andrea Cossu and Francesco Pisano are injured. Atalanta had Luigi Giorgi suspended with Giulio Migliaccio, Franco Brienza and Riccardo Cazzola out of action.
Once again, Cagliari played their home games at the Stadio Nereo Rocco in Trieste, although a return to the Sant’Elia is imminent.
Radja Nainggolan stung the goalkeeper’s palms from distance after three minutes, while Marco Sau’s curler whistled just past the far post.
It was all Cagliari and Daniele Conti’s free kick went over the wall to test the goalkeeper.
However, it was Atalanta who took the lead with their first real scoring opportunity. The defending and goalkeeping was static as Guglielmo Stendardo rose above the crowd to nod a header in off the ground.
The lead lasted all of 72 seconds, as Sau smartly volleyed an Albin Ekdal cross back to the edge of the box with his back to goal for Nainggolan to put his foot through it. The assist was absolutely inspired.
Andrea Consigli flew to fingertip a Mauricio Pinilla strike round the upright, while Michael Agazzi needed the same on Carlos Carmona’s rocket straight after the restart.
Sau was having a fantastic game and dribbled into the box for a lob on to the roof of the net.
Cagliari took the lead with a well-worked goal, as Murru pulled back to the edge of the box for Cabrera’s low strike.
Atalanta were still dangerous and a Maxi Moralez header whistled inches wide of the upright. Marko Livaja sprung the offside trap, but incredibly ballooned over from eight yards.
Livaja went close again moments later, this time his angled drive thumping the base of the far post.
Yet Cagliari nearly made it 3-1 on the counter-attack with the rapid Victor Ibarbo, his finish cracking against the upright.