SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 18 - 23 Dec 2017 (14.00 UK)
Genoa 1 - 0
Lapadula pen 92 (G)
Stadio Luigi Ferraris

Benevento suffered another last-gasp defeat, as Gianluca Lapadula earned and converted a penalty for Genoa in stoppages.

This was a massive relegation clash, but while Le Streghe were languishing at the foot of the table with only one point from 17 rounds, the Grifone didn’t expect to be in this position. There was a boost with the international transfer coming through for Giuseppe Rossi, who made his debut in the Coppa Italia loss to Juventus midweek. Benevento missed Luca Antei, Pietro Iemmello and Achraf Lazaar.

George Puscas should’ve done better with an Amato Ciciretti pull-back from the right flank, while Ervin Zukanovic’s scorcher blasted just off target.

Gaetano Letizia went off injured and towards half-time, Genoa were unlucky to rattle the woodwork twice in the space of 120 seconds.

First Adel Taarabt threaded through for Goran Pandev, whose snooker shot dribbled on to the base of the upright beyond Vid Belec.

Moments later, Miguel Veloso’s free kick found a Luca Rigoni header that cracked against the crossbar.

Ciciretti flashed a dangerous ball across the face of goal with nobody able to get the final touch, then Gianluca Lapadula’s smart chest and turn on the volley was denied by Vid Belec, but Benevento absolutely should’ve taken the lead on 73 minutes.

Raman Chibsah was sent clear on goal by Puscas, but hesitated and fired straight at Mattia Perin, then saw the rebound charged down by Nicolas Spolli.

Aleandro Rosi had to come off after he was accidentally booted in the face by an overhead kick from Del Pinto.

Benevento have certainly not been fortunate this season, but they have conceded far too many goals in the final minutes to drop points and did it again at Marassi. Lapadula burst into the box and was brought down as Belec came sliding clumsily out. The former Pescara and Milan striker converted the penalty himself to reward Genoa with victory.

It still wasn’t over, as moments later Filippo Costa’s strike skimmed the upright.

See the latest Serie A predictions and betting tips with Eurotips.co.uk


Genoa: Perin; Izzo, Spolli, Zukanovic; Rosi (Biraschi 78), Rigoni (Lapadula 55), Bertolacci (Cofie 77), Veloso, Laxalt; Pandev, Taarabt
: Belec; Costa, Lucioni, Djimsiti; Parigini (Gyamfi 57), Cataldi, Del Pinto, Letizia (Venuti 32); Lombardi, Puscas, Ciciretti (Chibsah 70)
Ref: Abisso