Samp’s cup run crumbles in Cagliari

Sampdoria faced a second trip to the Sardegna Arena in just four days after the remarkable league clash between the two sides that the hosts won 4-3 on Monday, and although less dramatic, ultimately the same fate awaited the visitors on a disappointing night in Cagliari in the fourth round of the Coppa Italia.

There was a fine atmosphere to welcome the two teams out on to the pitch for the second time this week, although there were no fewer than eight changes in the Samp line-up, with only Emil Audero, Alex Ferrari and Morten Thorsby retaining their places. The home side were fast out of the traps and took a deserved lead through a fine header by Alberto Cerri from a Daniele Ragatzu cross.

The Blucerchiati did grow into the game as the first half wore on, but were unable to make the most of any of the half chances that came their way, going in a goal behind at the interval.

Claudio Ranieri decided to make a change at half-time, with Regini on for Ferrari, but it proved to have little impact as Cagliari doubled their lead just two minutes into the second half. Daniele Ragatzu raced on to Artur Ionita’s cleverly disguised through-ball and confidently shot across Audero into the far corner to put the Sardinians in a commanding position.

The Blucerchiati did not give up the ghost, however, and substitute Manolo Gabbiadini cut the deficit with just four minutes left on the clock. The Italian controlled Ronaldo Vieira’s pass with his back to goal, turned and rifled a left-footed shot into the goal.

Although the visitors threw the proverbial kitchen sink at the Cagliari defence in the final stages and spurned some chances to equalise, it would prove to be the end of the club’s Coppa Italia campaign.

Next up for Ranieri’s charges is a home clash with Parma at the Ferraris on Sunday afternoon, with Serie A now our main focus for the rest of the season.

Cagliari 2-1 Sampdoria

Scorers: Cerri 7; Ragatzu 48, Gabbiadini 86.

Cagliari (4-3-2-1): Olsen; Cacciatore, Walukiewicz, Klavan, Likogiannis; Deiola, Oliva, Ionita; Castro (Nainggolan 74), Ragatzu (Nandez 88); Cerri (Joao Pedro 83).

Subs not used: Aresti, Ciocci, Pinna, Mattiello, Rog, Cigarini, Pisacane, Farago, Simeone.

Coach: Maran.

Sampdoria (4-3-3): Audero; Ferrari (Regini 46), Murillo, Chabot; Augello; Thorsby, Vieira, Linetty; Leris, Caprari (Gabbiadini 83), Maroni (Rigoni 64).

Subs not used: Seculin, Falcone, Rigoni, Jankto, Murru, D’Amico.

Coach: Ranieri.

Referee: Manganiello (Pinerolo).

Assistants: Bresmes (Bergamo) and Vacchi (Lamezia Terme).

Fourth official: Marini (Rome).

Stoppage time: 1+3.

Attendance: 11,781.

Pitch: In good condition.

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