Atalanta came back from a goal down to beat Sassuolo 2-1 in a thrilling encounter that was end-to-end stuff.
The Orobici were seeking their first points of the season after two unlucky defeats to Roma and Napoli. Leonardo Spinazzola was still sidelined after his summer-long contract dispute, but Gian Piero Gasperini engaged in some squad rotation ahead of Thursday’s Europa League opener against Everton.
Domenico Berardi drilled wide after spinning in the box, but Atalanta controlled the game and paid for their lack of consistency in attack.
Josip Ilicic slipped during a free kick routine, sparking a Sassuolo counter that saw Pol Lirola cross for Stefano Sensi’s goal against the run of play.
Atalanta got their deserved equaliser, the first in Serie A for Scandinavian forward Andreas Cornelius. He shrugged off a Francesco Magnanelli tackle on the edge of the box and hit the half-volley low into the near bottom corner.
On the stroke of half-time, Diego Falcinelli’s header from a Berardi cross skimmed the far post.
Play was increasingly difficult under heavy rainfall, but Papu Gomez whipped in a long free kick and substitute Andrea Petagna prodded in. Only after VAR consultation was the goal awarded, confirming he was not offside and did not push Paolo Cannavaro.
Sassuolo poured forward in the final stages, Berardi trying to lob Etrit Berisha from midfield and Antonino Ragusa firing straight at the goalkeeper when running on to a through ball.
Papu Gomez nearly sealed it on the counter, but slipped at the crucial moment, then Berisha flew to parry a Francesco Acerbi header.
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