It was a four-goal thriller at Marassi, as Rodrigo Palacio snatched a last-gasp equaliser for Genoa to stall Fiorentina.
Both these sides hoped to fight for Europe this season, but instead found themselves struggling to achieve mid-table safety. It was also a special occasion for Alberto Gilardino and Sebastien Frey against their former teammates, the striker having left only in January.
Bosko Jankovic was suspended with Juraj Kucka, Luca Antonelli, Andreas Granqvist and Kevin Constant sidelined. Alessio Cerci began a three-match ban for the Viola, joining the injured Per Kroldrup and Dias Felipe. The away team last won this fixture in 1982.
Frey needed his first save within the opening three minutes, parrying Amauri’s sliding finish from six yards.
However, it was Genoa who broke the deadlock with Fernando Belluschi’s splendid header that whipped past a static Artur Boruc from Giandomenico Mesto’s cross. It was the Argentine striker’s debut Serie A goal.
It should’ve been 2-0 soon after, but Rodrigo Palacio ballooned over the bar when one-on-one with Boruc. Davide Biondini had the ball in the net, but was flagged offside from Palacio’s assist.
Instead, Fiorentina equalised when Frey beat a Jovetic shot back into the middle and the Juan Manuel Vargas angled drive was redirected at full stretch by Riccardo Montolivo. Genoa were furious and wanted it flagged offside, but replays suggest the linesman got it right.
It was almost 2-1 for the Viola moments later, but Amauri sprung the offside trap only to fire straight at Frey.
Vargas flew past Mesto down the left and pulled back for Amauri, but Biondini dived in with a decisive intervention. Boruc needed two attempts to get a Miguel Veloso free kick under control.
Fiorentina restored their advantage with defender Cesare Natali, whose trademark looping header sailed into the top corner past former teammate Frey’s hand from a corner.
An Andrea Lazzari diving header flashed just wide and Genoa nearly equalised when nodding just wide from close range. Mesto got back in time for a crucial block on unmarked Vargas.
Moments later Genoa got their equaliser, as Gilardino chested down the ball for Palacio, who burst through the Fiorentina defence to toe-poke it past Boruc.