Sassuolo fought back from a goal down to beat Catania in a relegation six-pointer between the bottom two clubs.
It was a six-pointer between two teams who were at the Last Chance Saloon. The bottom two in Serie A went head-to-head at the Mapei Stadium in increasingly desperate situations. Domenico Berardi continued his three-match ban for Sassuolo, joined by the injured Aleandro Rosi, Francesco Acerbi, Tomas Manfredini, Reto Ziegler, Luca Marrone and Pucino. Catania missed Lucas Castro and Sergio Almiron.
After 70 seconds Antonio Floro Flores was at full stretch but unable to turn in at the back post, then a couple of minutes later Catania rattled the woodwork with a Keko angled drive that smacked against the upright.
It was wide open and Nicola Sansone’s effort was palmed out for a corner by Mariano Andujar, then the goalkeeper smothered a Floro Flores attempt.
Catania took the lead on the half-hour, as Gonzalo Bergessio sprung the offside trap to go clear and place his angled drive across the goalkeeper. The replays show Pedro Mendes was keeping Bergessio level, but only just.
Gino Peruzzi and Mendes went off with injuries, while young Spaniard Keko continued to cause all sorts of problems down the left flank.
Sassuolo introduced Simone Zaza at half-time and it proved an inspired substitution by Coach Eusebio Di Francesco.
Zaza got the hosts back on level terms when he blasted in after good work from Floro Flores down the left to pull back from the by-line.
Sassuolo looked a different team in the second half and thought they had taken the lead when a corner found Sergio Floccari at the back post, but his header was cleared off the line by Bergessio.
It was only a warning, as moments later Simone Missiroli was allowed a free header from six yards on a Floccari cross to turn the game around completely.
It was all Sassuolo now and Andujar palmed a Floro Flores free kick on to the crossbar from a very tight angle.
Sassuolo were furious when Missiroli appeared to be dragged back by Cristian Biraghi, but the referee waved away penalty appeals.
They did add a third goal with Sansone’s precise snooker shot into the far bottom corner.