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Alvarez strikes to secure well-deserved point for Sampdoria against Fiorentina


Alvarez strikes to secure well-deserved point for Sampdoria against Fiorentina

Sampdoria produced a battling display to hold high-flying Fiorentina to a 1-1 draw at the Stadio Artemio Franchi on Sunday afternoon.

Aside from the impressive football played by the Blucerchiati, it will be the character shown in Florence that will please Vincenzo Montella the most.

The Samp coach – who was greeted with warm applause on his return to Fiorentina – rung the changes before the match, drafting Diakite and Cassani into defence and picking Krsticic in midfield. Meanwhile, Correa and Alvarez were the chosen duo in attacking midfield, meaning Soriano dropped to the bench.

After a low-key start, Fabio Quagliarella warmed Tatarusanu’s palms with a quite magnificent bicycle kick on 18 minutes after a De Silvestri cross. Samp were looking solid but, as has happened all too often this season, their good work was undone as Ilicic exchanged passes with Borja Valero before firing home for 1-0 in the 24th minute.

Hearteningly, Doria rallied well and hauled their way back into the match on 39 minutes through Alvarez, whose low, left-footed bullet strike was too powerful for Tatarusanu to get a hand to. It was deserved reward for a positive first-half performance from the Blucerchiati.

Both sides had chances after the break, but things looked to have taken a turn for the worse from a Samp perspective as Correa picked up a second yellow for shirt pulling on 72 minutes. Indeed, it was almost instant karma for Doria as Ilicic thrashed the resultant free-kick off the bar.

Samp dug in once again, Quagliarella arguably having the best chance to win it as his fierce shot was tipped onto the bar by Tatarusanu. And though Blaszczykowski had the ball in the net late on, the referee ruled it out for offside and soon afterwards brought proceedings to a close to confirm a good point for Montella’s men.

Fiorentina 1-1 Sampdoria (HT: 1-1)
Scorers: Ilicic 24, Alvarez 39.

Fiorentina (4-2-3-1): Tatarusanu; Tomovic, G. Rodriguez, Astori, Alonso; T. Costa (Blaszczykowski 70), Badelj (Vecino HT); Tello, Ilicic, B. Valero; Babacar (Zarate 64).
Subs not used: Lezzerini, Satalino, Pasqual, Kone, Roncaglia.
Coach: Paulo Sousa.

Sampdoria (3-4-2-1): Viviano; Diakite, Ranocchia, Cassani; De Silvestri, Fernando, Krsticic (Ivan 66), Dodo (Moisander 86); Alvarez (Soriano 62), Correa; Quagliarella.
Subs not used: Puggioni, Brignoli, Rodriguez, Christodoulopoulos, Sala, Muriel, Silvestre, Skriniar, Cassano.
Coach: Vincenzo Montella.

Referee: Gervasoni (Mantova).
Assistants: Vivenzi, Lo Cicero (Brescia).
Fourth official: Peretti (Turin).
Additional assistants: Tagliavento (Terni), Di Paolo (Avezzano).

Yellow cards: Cassani 42, Gonzalo Rodriguez 49, Krsticic 53, Correa 58, Correa 72.
Red cards: Correa 72.

Added time: 0 + 5 mins.

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