SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 14 - 27 Nov 2017 (19.45 UK)
Atalanta 1 - 0
Cristante 75 (A)
Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia

Bryan Cristante scored the only goal of the game, as battling Benevento fell to a 14th straight defeat at Atalanta.

The Stregoni are yet to take a single point in the top flight, but they defended well in Bergamo and had a couple of chances of their own.

However, Cristante struck his fourth goal in four games from the edge of the box to leave Robert De Zerbi’s side on zero points yet again.

Orobici Coach Gian Piero Gasperini opted for Andreas Cornelius up-front, with Andrea Petagna left on the bench.

Benevento, meanwhile, were still hunting for their first ever Serie A point, having lost all of their 13 games so far.

Roberto De Zerbi’s side had conceded 33 goals going into the match, scoring only six, both of which represent the worst record in Serie A.

The Stregoni were without both of their strikers, Amato Ciciretti and Pietro Iemmello, so Cristiano Lombardi and Samuel Armenteros started up-front in a 4-3-3 formation, with Marco D’Alessandro completing the trident.

Cornelius had the first big chance of the game, heading over the bar from a Papu Gomez free-kick.

Andrea Costa had a header of his own at the other end, but couldn’t direct it goalward after getting on the end of a corner.

The visitors looked determined to finally break their duck, and Samuel Armenteros curled a left-footed shot just wide from the edge of the box.

Gomez was causing all sorts of problems for the Stregoni though, and his cutback was only centimetres away from being turned in by Cornelius just before the half hour mark.

Bryan Cristante was next to try his luck, but he didn’t catch his right-footed effort properly and it went just wide of Alberto Brignoli’s post.

At the other end Armenteros had a great chance to put Benevento ahead, but his header was a comfortable height and Etrit Berisha made the save.

Atalanta became increasingly frustrated after the break, and Gasperini sent on both Josip Ilicic and Andrea Petagna in an effort to find a winner.

Gomez stood a cross up to the back post which Masiello met on the volley, but he could only hit the side netting.

Danilo Cataldi played a nice one-two on the edge of the Orobici box, but his shot was straight at Berisha.

Benevento had defended well, but the home side’s pressure finally told with 15 minutes to play.

Cristante picked the ball up on the edge of the box, and his low right-footed strike beat Brignoli and nestled in the far corner.

A Gomez dummy set up Cristante for a second, but he slipped and was crowded out by the Stregoni defence.

The visitors pushed hard for the equaliser but just didn't have the quality, even with four minutes added time.

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Atalanta: Berisha; Toloi (Ilicic, 52), Caldara, Masiello; Hateboer, De Roon, Freuler, Castagne; Cristante; Cornelius (Petagna, 60), Gomez (Palomino, 90)
: Brignoli; Venuti, Djimsiti, Costa, Di Chiara; Del Pinto, Chibsah (Memushaj, 80), Cataldi; D’Alessandro (Kanoute, 66), Lombardi, Armenteros (Puscas, 46)
Ref: Pasqua