Chievo 0-0 Parma (Serie A)

It was all square at the Bentegodi between two sides who both hit the frame of the goal.

These sides were both mid-table and could effectively consider themselves safe from the drop, even though Parma were in far better shape after a 1-0 win over Milan midweek. Only Blerim Dzemaili and Alberto Paloschi were on the treatment table. Chievo missed Michele Marcolini, Moro, Bianchi and the suspended Giampiero Pinzi.

Chievo had the first scoring opportunity when Sergio Pellissier ran on to a Rigoni through ball and set up De Paula, but the Brazilian blasted over.

At the 25th minute Valeri Bojinov released a sudden screamer from 20 metres that Stefano Sorrentino flew to palm out from under the bar.

Simone Bentivoglio’s volley was smothered, but on 38 minutes Antonelli’s header from a Castellini cross forced a save at full stretch out of Sorrentino.

Luciano’s snapshot from distance was parried into the path of De Paula, who slipped at the crucial moment.

Straight after the restart De Paula’s left-foot shot thumped the base of the near post with the goalkeeper well beaten.

Parma also rattled the woodwork when Sorrentino flew to fingertip a fierce Zaccardo right-foot free kick on to the crossbar. Bojinov went close with a left-foot strike from the edge of the box that skimmed the upright.

Bojinov and Pellissier again missed the target by a small margin, but nobody was able to find a goal.

Sampdoria 1-1 Cagliari (Serie A)

Guberti 48 (S), Nene’ 81 (C)
Stadio Ferraris

Sampdoria are caught in fifth place by Juventus and Napoli after Nene’ scored a late equaliser and was sent off.

The Blucerchiati were right back in the race for Europe, despite their midweek defeat away to Bari. Antonio Cassano had scored two in as many games, so the injured Nicola Pozzi, Rossi and Luca Castellazzi were not missed. Cagliari were in crisis after one point from five fixtures and had to do without Andrea Cossu, Jeda, Andrea Lazzari, Pisano, Parola, Agazzi and the suspended Daniele Dessena.

The visitors got off to a great start, as after five minutes Marco Storari was forced into a desperate save to deny Alessandro Matri from a corner kick.

Franco Semioli nodded a Stefano Guberti cross just wide, as did Michele Canini at the other end with Daniele Ragatzu unable to get the final touch.

Ragatzu was playing as both Cossu and Lazzari were out of action. The youth product had a good game and his curler was off target from the edge of the box.

Cassano drilled over, had a free kick deflected and aimed another wide of the target, as he tried to single-handedly inspire Sampdoria.

The Blucerchiati found a way through at the dawn of the second half, just moments after Stefano Guberti had been moved between the lines. Giampaolo Pazzini spun round in the box for a deflected shot that ricocheted into the path of the on-rushing Guberti from 10 yards.

Matri also threatened, though, as he was sent clear by Daniele Conti only to hesitate and Storari held his ground very well in a one-on-one situation.

On the hour mark a long corner found Daniele Gastaldello’s header at the back post, but Federico Marchetti managed a point-blank reaction save to beat it away.

Cagliari equalised with a fantastic header from Nene’, who was allowed far too much space to nod in Conti’s free kick that was chipped over the top of a distracted defence.

Nene’ was sent off in stoppages for a bizarre rugby tackle from behind on Andrea Poli.

Tiago reject’s recall from Juve

The Portuguese international joined the Spaniards on loan in January and is starting to show his form of old.

Speaking to Cadena Ser, the man signed from Lyon for £11m in the summer of 2007 says he wants to end his Italian nightmare.

“I don’t want to go back to Italy,” said the former Chelsea player. “However, I still have two years left on my contract with Juventus and I can’t decide on what will happen.

“Atletico Madrid is a special club,” he added. “The fans have great passion and us players feel it.”

Juventus are understood to be willing to sell Tiago if a club makes a big enough offer for his services.

Udinese 0-0 Chievo (Serie A)

Stadio Friuli

A dire 0-0 draw was played out at the Stadio Friuli between two teams terrified of defeat.

These two sides were anxiously looking over their shoulders for a potential slip back into the danger zone. Giovanni Pasquale’s suspension prompted a defensive reshuffle, while Dusan Basta, Gaetano D’Agostino, Maurizio Domizzi and Christian Obodo were out of action. Chievo were without Michele Marcolini and Fabio Moro, but welcomed Andrea Mantovani back from a ban.

Antonio Floro Flores and Antonio Di Natale didn’t get enough power on their shots early on, but Andrea Coda was stretchered off with a knee injury to mark Damiano Ferronetti’s comeback.

Samir Handanovic had his palms stung by a Luca Ariatti screamer from distance.

Kwadwo Asamoah wasted a promising counter-attack when he refused to pass it and could only manage a meek finish.

Ariatti’s through ball was just a little too long for Giampiero Pinzi, who had been allowed to spring the offside trap. The two combined again soon after, but this time Handanovic rushed off his line to intercept.

Di Natale squeezed between two defenders to toe-poke the ball, but Stefano Sorrentino did well to save.

After the break Cristian Zapata did well to make a crucial intervention, denying Sergio Pellissier the tap-in from close range.

Pinzi’s header whistled wide from six yards from a taut Nicolas Frey cross from the right.

Sorrentino ran a real risk when he backpedalled to pluck a looping Paolo Sammarco header out of the air just before it completely crossed the line.

Later efforts included Pinzi again one-on-one with Handanovic only to hesitate and a Bernardo Corradi header.
Udinese: Handanovic; Isla, Zapata, Coda (Ferronetti 7), Lukovic; Sammarco, Inler, Asamoah; Pepe (Sanchez 46), Di Natale, Floro Flores (Corradi 85)

Chievo: Sorrentino; Frey, Morero, Yepes, Mantovani; Luciano, Rigoni, Ariatti (Bentivoglio 65); Pinzi; Pellissier (Sardo 92), De Paula (Granoche 75)

Ref: Mazzoleni

Atalanta 3-1 Cagliari (Serie A)

Tiribocchi 53 (A), Valdes pen 64, 72 (A), Conti 91 (C)
Stadio Azzurri d’Italia

Atalanta thrashed Cagliari 3-1, but were helped by a Daniele Dessena red card after just 17 minutes.

Time is running out for the Orobici, who were four points from safety going into this midweek round and only one above rock bottom Livorno despite Sunday’s 3-0 win. Cagliari’s confidence was collapsing after one point from five games, which saw the club reimburse fans after the 2-0 home defeat to Lazio at the weekend.

Cristiano Doni sat out a ban with the injured Edgar Barreto, Giampaolo Bellini, Paolo Zanetti and Leonardo Talamonti. The Sardinians had Diego Lopez suspended, while Francesco Pisano, Michael Agazzi and Andrea Parola didn’t make the trip.

Daniele Dessena drilled wide early on, but his game really didn’t last very long. After 17 minutes he flew in with a horrible late tackle from behind on Jaime Valdes at the byline and the referee had every reason to flash a straight red card.

Naturally Atalanta poured forward and soon after Federico Marchetti flew to palm a Gyorgy Garics angled drive round the post, while Valdes also tested the goalkeeper.

Javier Ernesto Chevanton limped off with a thigh problem and made way for Simone Tiribocchi in the first half.

Marchetti was keeping 10-man Cagliari in it with some more stunning saves on Valdes and even Agostini’s rather clumsy clearance that was turning into an own goal.

Atalanta finally broke through after the restart. Marchetti beat away a Simone Padoin screamer, but could do nothing on Simone Tiribocchi’s follow-up.

Valdes cut in from the left to unleash a rocket that Marchetti palmed out from under the crossbar.

Michele Canini clumsily tripped Tiribocchi and Valdes converted the penalty to double Atalanta’s advantage, sending Marchetti the wrong way.

Chilean Valdes completed his brace soon after with a sensational goal. He had acres of space on the counter, but took his time to curl a perfectly-aimed right-foot shot into the far top corner.

Nelson Jeda came on and off again after an injury. His replacement, Ragatzu, earned a controversial penalty when he just seemed to lose his balance during an acrobatic move. It didn’t matter, as Andrea Cossu smacked the penalty on to the underside of the bar.

Cagliari at least got a consolation goal in stoppages with Daniele Conti’s looping header.
Atalanta: Consigli; Garics, Bianco, Manfredini, Peluso, Ferreira Pinto (De Ascentiis 57), Guarente, Valdes (Ceravolo 75), Amoruso, Chevanton (Tiribocchi 35)

Cagliari: Marchetti; Canini, Ariaudo, Astori, Agostini, Dessena, Conti, Biondini, Cossu, Matri (Nene’ 71), Larrivey (Jeda 61) (Ragatzu 77)

Ref: Rocchi

Sent off: Dessena 17 (C)

Missed penalty: Cossu 80 (C)