SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 20 - 6 Jan 2018 (11.30 UK)
Torino 3 - 0 Bologna
De Silvestri 39 (T), Niang 53 (T), Iago Falque 85 (T)
Stadio Grande Torino

Torino made a stunning debut under new Coach Walter Mazzarri, sweeping Bologna aside 3-0 with Salvatore Sirigu saving a penalty.

The Granata sensationally fired Sinisa Mihajlovic after Wednesday’s 2-0 Coppa Italia Quarter-Final defeat to Juventus, so Mazzarri made his debut just 48 hours into his tenure. Adem Ljajic was back, but he still missed Andrea Belotti, Cristian Ansaldi, Lyanco, Antonio Barreca and Simone Edera. Bologna had lost three of the previous four rounds, then had to reshuffle with Adam Masina suspended and Domenico Maietta injured.

The Rossoblu now have only one win in their last 12 trips to Turin between Serie A and B, drawing four.

There was almost a goal within a couple of minutes, but Iago Falque blasted off target after running on to an Alex Berenguer ball over the top.

M’Baye Niang’s pull-back from the by-line tested Antonio Mirante, but the goalkeeper performed a stunning reaction save to palm Niang’s half-volley over the bar from point-blank range.

Rodrigo Palacio had a dangerous counter-attack interrupted cynically by his former Inter teammate Nicolas Burdisso, but Toro dominated and Iago Falque drilled just wide from 14 yards.

Mattia Destro sprung the offside trap on an Andrea Poli through ball, but his first touch let him down. Toro’s injury crisis deepened with Joel Obi limping off for Afriyie Acquah.

The hosts finally got their deserved opener when Berenguer whipped in a free kick from the right for Lorenzo De Silvestri’s towering header into the near top corner.

Giancarlo Gonzalez tripped Niang right on the edge of the box and Verdi was back for a decisive tackle on Iago Falque.

There was chaos at the start of the second half, as Verdi dribbled into the area and went down under a Cristian Molinaro tackle. At first the referee booked Verdi for simulation, then then viewed the incident on VAR and changed his mind, awarding a penalty. Erick Pulgar stepped up and his spot-kick was powerful, but mid-height, allowing Salvatore Sirigu to palm it over the bar.

Toro reacted immediately, as within a couple of minutes they had doubled their lead. Niang sprung the offside trap on a Iago Falque through ball, with his first touch cut back to send Pulgar sliding into empty space and smashed the left-foot angled drive into the far bottom corner.

Acquah volleyed off target and Molinaro got a decisive block to deflect Verdi’s shot wide, but Iago Falque added a third late on when he nutmegged Giancarlo Gonzalez from the edge of the box, the low finish wrong-footing Mirante into the near bottom corner.

It should've been 4-0 in stoppages, but Mirante performed a decisive save from point-blank range on Berenguer.


Torino: Sirigu; De Silvestri, Burdisso (Moretti 46), N’Koulou, Molinaro; Baselli, Rincon, Obi (Acquah 34); Iago Falque, Niang (Boye 81), Berenguer
Bologna: Mirante; Mbaye, Gonzalez, Helander (Falletti 82), Krafth; Poli, Pulgar; Verdi (Okwonkwo 67), Palacio, Di Francesco (Donsah 56); Destro
Ref: Damato

Saved penalty: Pulgar 50 (B)