Results from round 12 of the 2020/21 season:
Serie A table:
Crotone earn another point
Udinese failed to win their fourth consecutive match, being stopped at the Dacia Arena by an audacious Crotone, who battled for another point in their battle to survive, with 17th placed Fiorentina on four points more that the side.
Udinese were the better team, but couldn’t break the deadlock in what wasn’t a very entertaining game that does no harm to either side.
1-1 in the Inzaghi Derby
For the second time in their managerial career, the Inzaghi brothers face each other, as Filippo’s Benevento took on Simone’s Lazio.
The last time the two met, Simone’s team beat Filippo’s Bologna, but this time around it finished a 0-0 draw, with Benevento showing they are capable of picking up points against the bigger sides, following their draw with Juventus last week.
There were emotions, as once again Lazio proved unable to give a meaning to their season. They are stuck in ninth place, still 10 points behind first.Embed from Getty Images
Ronaldo misses penalty in Juve’s sixth draw of the season
You know you are one of the greatest when missing a penalty steals all the headlines. Juventus remain unbeaten, but Atalanta block the Champions, with Pierluigi Gollini putting in a goalkeeping masterclass.
Cristiano Ronaldo missed only his fourth penalty out of 30 taken with Juventus, who still remain within four points off the lead. Gollini saved it cleanly, also blocking two clear efforts from Alvaro Morata.
Musa Barrow involved in late drama
Spezia looked set to win their first Serie A game played at their own stadium after their move as M’bala Nzola gave the team a two-goal lead.
However, after being dominated, Bologna found their way back into the match in the 72nd minute, with Barrow scoring a screamer in stoppage time from close to the halfway line.
The disappointment for Spezia soon went from bad to worse as Bologna were awarded a penalty with seconds to go. It was the Gambian, Barrow, who took it, but Ivan Provedel saved it, as the striker went from hero to zero in the space of a few minutes.
Dull clash between Parma and Cagliari
Fourth consecutive points-scoring game for Parma, who seem to have found their way out of the relegation zone.
They held Cagliari to a 0-0 draw, their third in the last six games. Contrary to last year, where his Lecce side had the 10th best attack in the league, Fabio Liverani’s Parma are struggling to find goals, particularly from his forwards.
Veteran Gervinho (four) and Yann Karamoh (one) are the only strikers to have found the net for the Crociati.
Sampdoria back to winning ways after almost two months
In an odd matchweek where only three teams won, Sampdoria were among the few to get all three points, beating a disappointing Verona at the Bentegodi.
After a troublesome week, with the exclusion of Antonio Candreva from manager Claudio Ranieri, the Blucerchiati found the victory that they had been without since the end of October, with former Verona player Valerio Verre opening the score line.Embed from Getty Images
No winners at the Franchi
Cesare Prandelli gets his second point since he took charge of Fiorentina, holding the ever-dangerous Sassuolo to a 1-1 draw.
They finished with a goal and a shot against the the woodwork apiece, as La Viola striker Dusan Vlahovic’s penalty cancelled out to Hamed Junior Traore’s opening goal.
In a matchday with so many draws, it was a very late crossbar to deny Fiorentina a win, as Franck Ribery’s solo effort was deflected on to the bar by Andrea Consigli.
How fair is it to be given a red card for insulting the referee?
Inter beat Napoli, as fortunes turned in less than a minute. David Ospina fouled Matteo Darmian in the penalty box and captain Lorenzo Insigne was sent off for presumably insulting the referee.
Although the winger appeared convincing in saying he didn’t say what referee Davide Massa heard, there was protest post-game from manager Gennaro Gattuso.
When former players hunt you down
Milan fans will have been heartbroken to see former player Mattia Destro score a brace against their side in a 2-2 draw with Genoa. The striker looked set for a promising career, but after joining Milan things never really worked out for him.
He was one of many strikers affected by Milan’s “Number nine curse” and had only scored five goals since February of 2018.
It had to be his night against his old club, even if Pierre Kalulu saved the Rossoneri, who once again battled back in the late stages to avoid defeat, reducing their gap to Inter to just a point.Embed from Getty Images
Is it time to change VAR’s rules?
Torino’s game against Roma was quickly blemished by a double yellow for Wilfred Singo, meaning his team were forced to play 75 minutes with 10 men. His first yellow was unquestionable, but the second one appeared exaggerated.
VAR could not intervene, given it can only be applied for straight reds. This resulted in a poor showing by Torino, whose terrible league situation was made worse by the 3-1 defeat. Is it time to review the way VAR works? Subtle tweaks to offside rules and bookings may just be enough.
You can also view last week’s talking column by clicking here