Serie A Week 12 - 16 Dec 2020 (19.45 UK)
Spezia 2 - 2 Bologna
Nzola 19, 63 (S), Dominguez 72 (B), Barrow 92 (B)
Stadio Alberto Picco

It was an astonishing game at the Stadio Picco, as Spezia wasted a 2-0 lead and then Bologna could’ve won it in stoppages, but Musa Barrow’s penalty was saved.

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This was an historic occasion, as for the first time in their Serie A history, Spezia were able to play a home game at the Stadio Picco following restructuring work. They had until now been using the Orogel Stadium in Cesena.

Both sides were coming off surprisingly heavy defeats, as Spezia fell 4-1 at Crotone and Bologna conceded all the goals in their 5-1 loss to Roma in the first half. M’Bala Nzola was back for the hosts, although Daniele Verde, Cristian Dell’Orco, Federico Mattiello, Andrij Galabinov and Jeroen Zoet were still sidelined. Bologna missed Aaron Hickey, Ibrahima Mbaye, Andreas Skov Olsen, Lukasz Skorupski, Federico Santander, Riccardo Orsolini and Jerdy Schouten.

Nzola made an impressive comeback after missing last week’s game, as he was immediately on target. Emmanuel Gyasi intelligently and generously rolled it across when he saw the goalkeeper tearing out towards him, allowing Nzola a simple tap-in.

Bologna tried to bite back, but Musa Barrow’s strike flashed across the open goal to skim the far post, then Estevez missed an absolute sitter for Spezia by blasting over from six yards.

Spezia were unlucky within seconds of the restart, as Kevin Agudelo’s effort from a tight angle was fingertipped onto the upright by Angelo Da Costa.

They did double their lead eventually with a well-worked move, as Agudelo ran onto a through ball from Estevez and rolled it across for another simple Nzola finish.

Nzola could even have had a hat-trick, but Da Costa came tearing out to smother at his feet.

Bologna did finally pull one back when a Barrow corner came to Nico Dominguez, he controlled it well and then swung in the right-foot finish.

It remained wide open, Gyasi at full stretch unable to reach the Nzola assist, but suddenly the game was transformed in stoppages.

Barrow spotted Ivan Provedel off his line and scored an astonishing equaliser with a lob from midfield.

Moments later, a penalty was awarded for a coming together between Tommaso Pobega and Roberto Soriano. Barrow stepped up to take, but just as he’d done in the Coppa Italia against Spezia earlier this season, it was saved by Provedel at the 97th minute. Provedel even managed to parry the rebound from Barrow.

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Spezia: Provedel; Ferrer, Erlic, Chabot, Marchizza; Estevez, Agoume (Pobega 81), Maggiore (Deiola 73); Gyasi, Nzola, Agudelo (Farias 64)
Bologna: Da Costa; De Silvestri, Danilo, Paz, Tomiyasu; Dominguez (Poli 81), Medel (Baldursson 81); Vignato (Svanberg 55), Soriano, Barrow; Palacio (Rabbi 84)
Ref: Giacomelli

Saved penalty: Barrow 97 (B)