SERIE A MATCH REPORT

Serie A Week 34 - 30 Apr 2017 (14.00 UK)
2 - 0 Fiorentina
Diamanti 32 (P), Aleesami 91 (P)
Stadio Renzo Barbera

Everyone was expecting this to be Palermo’s swansong, but an Alessandro Diamanti free kick and Haitam Aleesami solo counter surprisingly beat Fiorentina.

Pescara were relegated last week and the Sicilians knew they would soon follow, going into the Stadio Barbera on a run of two points from 10 rounds, including the 6-2 thrashing at Lazio. Incredibly, they were 5-0 down in that game within 28 minutes, a clear sign that the squad – on its third Coach of the campaign – had given up. The Viola, on the other hand, gave themselves a very slim chance of European qualification with their 5-4 thriller against Inter, though Nikola Kalinic was still suspended, with Nenad Tomovic and Gonzalo Rodriguez carrying knocks.

The last time Palermo beat Fiorentina in the league was in 2011, when current Viola player Josip Ilicic scored in a 2-0 win.

The Viola dominated the first half and kept the ball almost constantly, but were ineffective in front of goal. The same was not true of Alessandro Diamanti, who curled a trademark free kick into the near top corner to give Palermo a surprise lead.

Fiorentina lost Milic to injury and thought substitute Federico Chiesa had scored with his first touch, but Carlos Sanchez had wandered offside on the assist.

Just before the break, Borja Valero and Milan Badelj combined to send Khouma Babacar clear, but Andrea Fulignati flung himself at it for a decisive save.

Chiesa tested Fulignati again from distance and Fiorentina poured forward, but were ineffective in attack. Substitute Mlakar’s header failed to make the most of a Cristian Tello cross and in the final minutes Davide Astori rather harshly received a second yellow card for a block on Roland Sallai.

Palermo then secured the victory with a fantastic solo run from Haitam Aleesami, sprinting forward down the left to shrug off Tello, then Carlos Sanchez before slipping the angled drive past Tatarusanu.

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: Fulignati; Cionek, Goldaniga, Andelkovic (Gonzalez 68); Rispoli, Gazzi, Jajalo, Chochev, Aleesami; Diamanti (Bruno Henrique 90); Nestorovski (Sallai 82)
Fiorentina: Tatarusanu; Salcedo (Saponara 57), Sanchez, Astori; Tello, Vecino, Badelj, Milic (Chiesa 36); Ilicic (Mlakar 70), Borja Valero; Babacar
Ref: Tagliavento

Sent off: Astori 88 (F)