SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 33 - 20 Apr 2019 (14.00 UK)
Cagliari 1 - 0
Joao Pedro pen 27 (C)
Sardegna Arena

Joao Pedro converted a penalty to give Cagliari a potentially decisive victory for the race to avoid relegation, as Frosinone slide closer to the inevitable.

This was technically a relegation battle, although their fates were probably sealed even before setting foot in the Sardegna Arena. It’s just as well, because Cagliari had Nicolò Barella, Luca Pellegrini and Fabio Pisacane suspended, with Fabrizio Cacciatore and Lucas Castro injured, so Valter Birsa took over the trequartista role. Frosinone were practically relegated already despite some recent surprise results, including a last-gasp victory away to Fiorentina. Raman Chibsah sat out a ban, with Federico Viviani, Bartosz Salamon and Francesco Cassata out of action.

Luca Paganini blasted just over in the opening minutes, slightly shinning the half-volley from a very promising position, while Marco Sportiello had to be on his toes to fingertip a wayward Charalampos Lykogiannis cross-shot out from under the bar.

Frosinone continued to threaten, Edoardo Goldaniga unable to keep the ball down as he slid on to a Camillo Ciano free kick, then Daniel Ciofani fired over under pressure from Ragnar Klavan.

Francesco Zampano clumsily clattered into Artur Ionita on a counter-attack for a penalty, which Joao Pedro converted to give Cagliari the lead.

It was almost 2-0 just before half-time, but Leonardo Pavoletti only skimmed the Birsa cross and Luca Valzania prevented Paolo Faragò tapping in at the back post.

Marco Sportiello took the sting out of a Pavoletti daisy-cutter, while Ionita’s header sailed over the bar. Cagliari went down to 10 men after Faragò received his second yellow card for a clumsy challenge on Beghetto.

Frosinone saw their chance and poured forward, Alessio Cragno palming away a Camillo Ciano free kick.

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Cagliari: Cragno; Srna, Ceppitelli, Klavan (Romagna 61), Lykogiannis; Faragò, Cigarini, Ionita; Birsa (Padoin 73); Joao Pedro (Deiola 84), Pavoletti
: Sportiello; Goldaniga, Ariaudo, Capuano, Zampano (Pinamonti 62); Paganini, Maiello, Valzania (Trotta 80), Beghetto; Ciani, D Ciofani (Dionisi 76)
Ref: Abisso

Sent off: Faragò 79 (C)