It was a dramatic Verona Derby, as Hellas took the lead and then self-destructed with Bruno Zuculini’s dismissal, but Sergio Pellissier won it 3-2 for Chievo.
The Derby della Scala returned to the top flight with the Flying Donkeys in mid-table and Hellas starting to recover after a dismal start, earning their first win last week against 10-man Benevento. Thomas Heurtaux was only fit for the bench, but Enrico Bearzotti missed out for the ‘visitors.’
Chievo had not beaten Verona since December 2014, managing two draws and a defeat.
It took just six minutes to break through, as Martin Caceres pulled back from the by-line down the right, palmed into the path of Daniele Verde to fire in undisturbed from 10 yards.
Valter Birsa nodded a Fabrizio Cacciatore cross over the bar and Manuel Pucciarelli drilled straight at Nicolas, but Chievo found their equaliser when Roberto Inglese got away from Bruno Zuculini to nod in a Birsa free kick. After a brief pause for the VAR check, it was ruled onside.
Within seven minutes, the game had been turned around completely, as Zuculini tripped Perparim Hetemaj just inside the area and Inglese converted the penalty, drilling low into the near bottom corner.
It was safe to say Bruno Zuculini had a nightmare derby. He was booked for the free kick which allowed the equaliser – and lost his marker – then gave away the penalty and received a second yellow card before half-time for a ridiculous sliding tackle from behind on Birsa. Zuculini was making his comeback after a red card against Torino two weeks ago.
It could’ve been a hat-trick for Inglese, who controlled a cross with his back to goal, spun round and blasted over the bar.
Despite this situation, Verona got back on level terms after the restart when VAR considered Alessandro Gamberini’s handling offence on a Martin Caceres header to be voluntary. Giampaolo Pazzini stepped up and buried the penalty into the near bottom corner.
However, Sergio Pellissier came off the bench and consolidated his status as a Chievo national treasure. He was in the right place at the right time, bundling a Cacciatore low cross over the line from close range.
Mariusz Stepinski had the ball in the net on 87 minutes with a free header, but it was ruled offside using VAR by the tightest of margins.
Sent off: B Zuculini 40 (V)