Serie A Week 3 - 3 Oct 2020 (14.00 UK)
Sassuolo 4 - 1 Crotone
Berardi 19 (S), Simy pen 49 (C), Caputo pen 58, 85 (S), Locatelli 93 (S)
Mapei Stadium

Sassuolo were clinical in attack, the complete opposite of a Crotone side who failed to take their chances, and emerged with a 4-1 victory.

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The Neroverdi were still missing Jeremie Boga, Marlon, Francesco Magnanelli, Rogerio and Filippo Romagna, while newly-promoted Crotone were seeking their first points of the season without Emanuel Riviere and Ahmad Benali.

It was a bright start for the Squali, as Simy got away from Vlad Chiriches to cause panic in the six-yard box and they had a series of corners, but it was Sassuolo who broke the deadlock with a bit of luck.

Domenico Berardi’s first touch on a wonderful Manuel Locatelli cross-field pass wasn’t great, but a lucky ricochet set it up for Gregoire Defrel, who gave it straight back for Berardi’s shot from the edge of the box. It may well have also taken a deflection off Defrel to wrong-foot Alex Cordaz.

Mert Muldur made a decisive interception to stop Simy going clear, while Luca Cigarini’s free kick bounced off the crossbar off Andrea Consigli’s fingertips and Gian Marco Ferrari needed a perfect sliding tackle on Simy.

The hosts lost Chiriches to injury and Crotone again created a fine chance with smart passing, but the finish from Milos Vulic was straight at Consigli. Junior Messias prodded a weak effort into the goalkeeper’s arms too after a Simy assist.

Crotone finally got the equaliser they deserved thanks to an entirely avoidable penalty, as Medhi Bourabia kicked Cigarini in the shin. Simy converted into the near bottom corner after a slow and stuttering run-up.

However, Sassuolo also received a spot-kick using VAR, as Pereira had his hand up when charging down the cross from Berardi. Cordaz guessed the right side, but couldn’t get his fingertips to the Caputo penalty into the bottom corner.

It was almost 3-1 moments later, as Crotone were so busy protesting that they were caught cold, but Kyriakopoulos was offside when passing it to Filip Djuricic for the angled drive. Berardi was also denied by a crucial Golemic block in the box and Kyriakopoulos had more penalty appeals for a Pereira shirt tug.

Manuel Locatelli bravely flung himself in the path of a Simy strike from 14 yards, while Arkadiusz Reca was inches away from meeting the Denis Dragus assist.

However, Sassuolo again were clinical on the counter-attack to go 3-1 up. Berardi’s inspired slide-rule pass was laid on a silver platter for Caputo to sprint forward, send Cordaz to ground with a little dummy and dink it over him into the empty net.

Crotone’s defensive woes made it an even heavier result in stoppages, as Marrone and Magallan got into a muddle, effectively setting the ball up for Locatelli to blast in from 14 yards.

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Sassuolo: Consigli; Muldur (Kyriakopoulos 53), Chiriches (Ayhan 34), Ferrari, Toljan; Bourabia (Obiang 53), Locatelli; Berardi, Defrel (Peluso 90), Djuricic (Traore 90); Caputo
Crotone: Cordaz; Magallan, Marrone, Golemic; Pereira (Rispoli 85), Molina, Cigarini (Gomelt 77), Vulic (Dragos 77), Reca; Simy, Messias
Ref: Pezzuto