SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 25 - 23 Feb 2014 (14.00 UK)
Udinese 1 - 1 Atalanta
Brivio 24 (A), Di Natale pen 71 (U)
Stadio Friuli

Udinese had the better of the game and hit the bar late on, but Udinese grabbed a point thanks to a penalty.

Both teams have broken away from the danger zone, though Francesco Guidolin warned “the alarm bells are still ringing.” The Friulani had seven points from the last three rounds, but the visitors were fresh from a humiliating 4-0 home defeat to Parma. Thomas Heurtaux and Roberto Pereyra were suspended for Udinese, while Atalanta’s injury list included Franco Brienza, Riccardo Cazzola, Constantin Nica and Gianpaolo Bellini.

Francesco Guidolin made history by becoming the Udinese Coach with the most Serie A games under his belt, this his 173rd.

Giacomo Bonaventura almost gave Atalanta the surprise lead after five minutes when he got on the end of a corner to thump the base of the near post, though Allan’s last-ditch tackle might’ve got a decisive touch.

Moments later at the other end Luis Muriel fired straight at Andrea Consigli, but there was a magnificent chance on 20 minutes.

Maxi Moralez hit a spectacular scissor-kick volley from 12 yards, matched only by an equally impressive one-handed save from Udinese’s 17-year-old goalkeeper Simone Scuffet.

However, Atalanta did get their goal soon after. Davide Brivio ran on to a Cristian Raimondi pass over the top to the back post and surprised Scuffet with a smart chipped finish.

It was so nearly 2-0 before the half-hour, as Guglielmo Stendardo knocked down a free kick, but Mario Yepes at full stretch just failed to get a toe to it from a yard out.

Guidolin had no time to waste and made a tactical substitution after 32 minutes, introducing Bruno Fernandes – who was booked within 30 seconds – and moving to four at the back.

The referee pointed to the spot for a penalty when Consigli parried a Nico Lopez effort and Antonio Di Natale tried to get on the end of it, but fell under pressure from Stendardo. Replays are not entirely clear on what happened, as they might’ve crossed paths and clipped heels by accident, but Di Natale converted to equalise.

Luca Cigarini could’ve given Atalanta all three points when he pounced on a defensive error to hit a half-volley from distance, but it only clipped the crossbar.


Udinese: Scuffet; Naldo (Bruno Fernandes 32), Danilo, Domizzi; Widmer, Badu (Yebda 88), Allan, Pinzi, Basta; Muriel (Nico Lopez 57); Di Natale
Atalanta: Consigli; Benalouane, Stendardo, Yepes, Brivio; Raimondi (Estigarribia 81), Baselli (Cigarini 70), Carmona, Bonaventura; Maxi Moralez (De Luca 63); Denis
Ref: Di Bello