Sampdoria demolished Crotone 5-0 at Marassi with five different players on target, including Fabio Quagliarella and Karol Linetty.
The Blucerchiati were aiming to maintain their perfect home record this season, missing only Emiliano Viviano and Dodo, but the Calabrese visitors had to do without Oliver Kragl, Marco Tumminello, not fully fit Simy and Aleksandar Tonev, while Marcus Rohden pulled out in the warm-up to be replaced by Andrea Barberis.
Crotone had amassed two wins and a draw against Samp, home and away, since a 2-0 Serie B loss at Marassi in November 2011.
The deadlock was broken by a familiar face within three minutes. Lucas Torreira whipped in the free kick for a towering Gianmarco Ferrari header into the far top corner. He refused to celebrate against his former club.
Arlind Ajeti dragged back Duvan Zapata by the jersey for a penalty, which Fabio Quagliarella converted powerfully into the near bottom corner, despite Alex Cordaz guessing the right side. It was the first time Quagliagol had scored past Crotone.
Ante Budimir almost scored an own goal moments later, nodding a free kick on to the crossbar with Cordaz beaten.
Crotone started to come out of their shelves after a dismal start, Rolando Mandragora and Ajeti drilling off target from distance,
However, Duvan Zapata shrugged off a challenge to reach the by-line and roll across for Gianluca Caprari to tap in at the back post.
On the stroke of half-time, Budimir thought he’d pulled one back for Crotone, but his header bounced off the underside of the bar and did not cross over, as confirmed by goal-line technology.
A low cross-shot was just beyond Karol Linetty, allowing Cordaz to smother, while Andrea Nalini over-hit his assist for Budimir.
Adrian Stoian blasted over, but Sampdoria added a fourth with a well-worked team move. Dennis Praet pulled back from the right for Linetty to side-foot home relatively undisturbed from 12 yards.
Dawid Kownacki came off the bench and scored with practically his first touch, as he pounced on a poor Cordaz clearance and rolled the finish under the goalkeeper’s legs.
Federico Ceccherini’s angled drive skimmed the far post late on.