Joy for Pescara in Florence
Pescara eased their relegation worries with a stunning 2-0 upset of Champions League hopefuls Fiorentina.
Last Updated: 06/01/13 4:41pm
Pescara eased their relegation worries with a stunning 2-0 upset of Champions League hopefuls Fiorentina in Florence.
Pescara were indebted to goalkeeper Mattia Perin as they survived a first-half onslaught before snatching victory through second-half goals from Jonathas and Mervan Celik.
The result came entirely against the odds, not least as Fiorentina had a long string of chances in the opening 45 minutes.
The first fell to Luca Toni just three minutes into the match but he fired directly at Perin after fine work from Juan Cuadrado, and minutes later it was Toni again who got up to meet Borja Valero's cross, only to be denied by a fine save low down to Perin's left.
Cuadrado was the next to test the goalkeeper with a drilled effort from outside the area before the Colombian crossed for Toni to head narrowly over.
Stevan Jovetic tried his luck from outside the area but again Perin was equal to it before he made an even better save to keep out Alberto Aquilani's close-range header from Valero's free-kick.
Cuadrado sent a decent chance over and the half ended with yet another block from Perin, who denied Valero from close-range.
Fiorentina had the first chance of the second half but met a familiar foe when Perin blocked Cuadrado's shot, and moments later they found themselves trailing after Pescara's first sustained attack.
Vladimir Weiss crossed from the right and Jonathas was there to head into the bottom right-hand corner of the net with Norberto Neto well beaten.
Manuel Pasqual was agonisingly close to an equaliser as he stretched to meet a Matias Fernandez cross which only needed a touch, but he could not make it.
Jonathas might then have doubled Pescara's lead but headed high over the bar when well placed from a corner, while Perin was soon in action again at the other end to keep out Adem Ljajic's volley.
The goalkeeper then denied Jovetic and watched another Ljajic shot fizz past his post before Pescara wrapped up victory in stoppage time, with Celik capitalising on an error from Facundo Roncaglia to fire past Neto.