Antonio Cassano created two and scored a third as 10-man Parma beat Sassuolo 3-1 in the fiery Emilia Derby.
This was the first ever Serie A edition of the Emilia Derby and already a relegation dogfight. Amauri and Marco Marchionni were suspended with Daniele Galloppa, Stefano Okaka and Gabriel Paletta injured. Sassuolo were propping up the table and switched to a 3-5-2 for this game, missing Luca Marrone, Emanuele Terranova, Carl Valeri and Gomes.
There was extremely heavy rain over Parma in the hours leading up to the match, so plastic sheeting was left on the pitch until the last possible minute.
Raffaele Palladino drilled wide from distance, but there was bad news when Jonathan Biabiany hobbled off just 17 minutes in to make way for Aleandro Rosi.
Palladini did get the ball in the net, but was offside in the build-up when Antonio Cassano gathered to roll across. It was an extremely tight decision and FantAntonio was furious.
Antonio Mirante had to palm a sudden Simone Missiroli snapshot round the post, but it was Parma who broke through.
Cassano created it, battling to dispossess Francesco Acerbi near the corner flag and chip up a pass for Palladino’s header from seven yards.
Chaos erupted in first half stoppages when Domenico Berardi pounced on a dreadful Massimo Gobbi backpass and sprinted into the box, colliding with goalkeeper Mirante. The move continued and Alessandro Lucarelli performed a decisive goalline clearance before Magnanelli’s effort could roll over from a tight angle.
However, after consultation with his assistant, the referee sent off Mirante for the foul and awarded the penalty, although replays suggest the foul might’ve been just outside the box. Nonetheless, 19-year-old Berardi stepped up and converted for his debut Serie A goal.
It was substitute goalkeeper Pavol Bajza’s second Serie A match and he looked nervous after the restart, getting down slowly to palm away a deflected Simone Zaza effort.
Zaza went close again when he sprung the offside trap, chested down the ball and hit the half-volley on to the side-netting.
Antonio Floro Flores came off the bench and smacked a fierce long-range shot against the base of the upright with Bajza beaten.
However, amid all the pressure it was 10-man Parma who took the lead in a rainy Stadio Tardini. Once again Cassano was the creator from the left, finding Aleandro Rosi’s glancing header across Gianluca Pegolo into the far bottom corner.
It was almost 2-2 moments later, as Bajza smothered a Berardi strike, but Cassano got his name on the scoresheet instead. He sprung the offside trap on a ball over the top and kept his cool to finish near post after feinting a shot the other way. FantAntonio had already created two goals and celebrated the third with a samba move that may well need some work.
Acerbi’s angled drive flashed across the face of goal after a smart Zaza backheel flick, then Rosi should’ve made it 4-1 from a Cassano through ball only to blast over the bar.
Sassuolo also went down to 10 men after Magnanelli’s second bookable offence for deliberate handball. There was still time for Bajza to make a couple of tricky saves, as Sassuolo didn't give in.
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Sent off:Mirante 45+3 (P), Magnanelli 87 (S)