Udinese comfortably swept Sassuolo aside 3-0 with Rodrigo De Paul on target for the third game running, Stefano Okaka and Ken Sema.
This was a delicate fixture between two teams hovering just above the relegation zone. The Friulani seemed in no rush to find a permanent coach, as caretaker manager Luca Gotti was keeping them afloat, but Sassuolo made the trip without suspended Domenico Berardi and Manuel Locatelli, plus injured Alfred Duncan, Gregoire Defrel, Marlon, Vlad Chiriches and Alessandro Tripaldelli.
The Neroverdi were unbeaten in their last five Serie A visits to Udine, winning three and drawing two.
Kevin Lasagna caught Gian Marco Ferrari in possession and sprinted forward to test Andrea Consigli, then on the resulting corner Stefano Okaka only got a stud to it from a yard out.
Okaka threatened again moments later, his header skimming the crossbar from a corner.
However, Sassuolo fought back and went even closer on 13 minutes when Hamed Junior Traore toe-poked a loose ball and it clipped the near post.
Udinese broke through eventually, as another corner was whipped in for Okaka to shrug off Pedro Obiang and score with a free header.
Rodrigo De Paul and Traore fired just wide on solo efforts, Rolando Mandragora forced a save from close range, but straight after the restart Juan Musso made a decisive one-handed save on Traore at the near post.
Sassuolo had more of the ball after the break and Musso fingertipped a Boga curler round the upright after a well-worked team move.
However, Udinese were more clinical and doubled their lead. Seko Fofana ran into the box and saw there was a crowd of players in front, so spread it out to the left flank for a precise Ken Sema angled drive into the far bottom corner.
Kyriakopoulos hit a scorcher to sting Musso’s gloves at the near top corner, but once again Sassuolo were caught on the counter.
It was De Paul who for the first time in his career managed to find the net in three consecutive matches. Udinese had a rapid turnover with Seko Fofana after a Sassuolo corner and De Paul kept his cool to blast in the finish from a tricky angle.
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