Atalanta and Parma defenders both scored great goals for a thrilling 1-1 draw in Bergamo.
The Ducali had scraped just three points from the last five rounds and faced a difficult trip to Roberto Donadoni’s hometown club. They were at least boosted by news Atalanta were without Guglielmo Stendardo, Stefano Lucchini, Daniele Capelli, Simone Tiribocchi and the suspended Guido Marilungo. Parma also missed Massimo Gobbi, Raffaele Palladino and Daniele Galloppa.
There were two injuries during the warm-up, as Antonio Mirante and Matteo Brighi pulled out before kick-off, making way for Nicola Pavarini and Carlos Carmona.
In the opening minute Carmona needed a sliding tackle to charge down Stefano Okaka’s strike, but it was Atalanta who took the lead.
Tomas Manfredini’s overhead kick from a corner seemed to take Pavarini by surprise, as the Maxi Moralez cross was looped into the air by a Gabriel Paletta howler.
Sebastian Giovinco’s free kick was beaten away with some difficulty and Jaime Valdes stung Andrea Consigli’s palms. Another set play from the Atomic Ant skimmed the woodwork, as did Valdes, while Pavarini smothered a Manolo Gabbiadini daisy-cutter.
Consigli flew to palm a dangerous Giovinco free kick out of the far top corner, as the Italian international went for goal from a very tight angle.
Pavarini was also tested, as he had to flap a Federico Peluso cross-shot out from under the bar.
Parma equalised after the restart, as Paletta jumped above the crowd to get his head to a Valdes cross from the left, steering it in at the near post.
Ezequiel Schelotto burst down the right and Pavarini missed his cross, but German Denis couldn’t get clean enough contact with his head to turn it into a goal.
Paletta was crucial at the other end too, clearing off the line as a ball bobbled around the six-yard box from the Denis attempt.
Luca Cigarini’s volley from the edge of the area squirmed wide of the far post, but Parma held on under a late siege.