Tuff Enough - Siena 0-1 Fiorentina

Gabriele Maltinti

Fiorentina won a tough Tuscan Darby 1-0 at the other Stadio Artemio Franchi and stay in 4th place.

Needing a win to hold off onrushing Udinese and Lazio and keep a 4 point gap between 4th and 5th place, Fiorentina scored early and made it stand, beating Siena 1-0 on a 14 minute goal from Gonzalo Rodriguez.

Recap

Once again Vincenzo Montella had to juggle his lineup as Adem Ljajic and Nenad Tomovic were suspended, Alberto Aquilani injured and David Pizarro unable to make the start. The Viola coach put Stefan Savic, Gonzalo Rodriguez, Marvin Commper and Manuel Pasqual out in front of goalie Emiliano Viviano.

Matias Fernandez and Giulio Migliaccio filled in for Aquilani and Pizarro next to Borja Valero, while Stevan Jovetic filled into Ljajic's spot, while Marcelo Larrondo took up the middle next to Juan Cuadrado,

The match started off lively enough for Fiorentina as Jovetic got off a shot from a nice cross by larrondo in the second minute that Siena goalie Gianluca Pegolo parried away for a corner. Cuadrado took another shot following the corner from way out, but missed it wide.

Jovetic got another chance on a header from a Savic cross that just missed in the 6th minute.

6 minutes later, Siena got their first chance as Viviano was called on to save a shot by Matteo Rubin, assisted by Simone Vergassola.

A minute after that, however, Rubin would give up a corner and Fiorentina would make Siena pay. Fiorentina took a short corner, worked the ball to Fernandez at the top of the box, who gave it back to Pasqual, and he drove along the end line and served a perfect ball to Rodriguez who was all alone in front of the goal. Siena called for offside, but replays showed the defender on Pasqual kept La Viola onside. The goal was very similar to Ljajc's charge on Aquilani's goal in Sampdoria.

Chances became slim after the goal as it was another 13 for the next shot, a miss from Jovetic and another 7 minutes for a shot from Valero that required a save.

Siena didn't get another shot until 5 minutes before halftime, a miss from Innocent Emeghar (ERMAGHERD!).

Larrondo got off three more shots in the 5 minutes before the half, but two were misses and one was blocked on the way in. The half ended 1-0

In the first 15 minutes of the half, each team got off one shot, but only Cuadrado's shot was on net and required a save.

At minute 60, Montella brought on Mounir El Hamdaoui to replace Larrondo, most likely due to fatigue.

There were more shots on each side, but it wasn't until minute 70 that Alessandro Rosina got loose and got off a long range shot that ripped towards the goal , beat Viviano, but glanced off the crossbar.

After that chance, Montella played his second card, bringing in Romulo for Fernandez.

Jovetic got off one more shot, but missed. Montella played his final card, bringing on Luca Toni for Jovetic.

Toni got his chance to end the game 3 minutes later as Pasqual broke free again and served a perfect ball to Toni about 5 yards from net and he scuffed it off the crossbar.

Fiorentina had one more chance to salt away the victory, a 5 on 2 breakaway, but Cuadrado was unable to get the pass right, but Fiorentina were not made to pay and it ended 1-0.

Fiorentina finished the match with 54% possession and out shot Siena 14 to 8, with 4 shots on goal to Siena's 1.

Fiorentina retain 4th place for the 9th straight match day, since beating Lazio 2-0 on March 10th and have only two matches more to go to earn their best league finish since 2008-09. With two wins, Fiorentina will not only match that squads feat, but surpass them in points as that squad got 68 points and this years team could achieve 70. There is still a slim chance for third place, but it would take a Milan meltdown of epic proportions, but one can hope.

Yellow Cards

Disqualification of one game after the 4th, 8th, 12th, 15th and the 17th yellow card. Past 17, every yellow card is equivalent to a one-match ban. (Players receiving yellow cards in this match have an *, red cards #)

Pizarro (13)
Cuadrado (11) - one game suspension on the next card.
Roncaglia (9)
Rodriguez (9)
Aquilani (6)
Migliaccio (5) *
Pasqual (4)
Savic (4) -
Tomovic (4)
Valero (4)
Jovetic (3) - one game suspension on the next card.
Ljajic (2) - banned for one match
Toni (3) - one game suspension on the next card.
Commper (1) *
Fernandez (1)
Larrando(1)
Romulo (1)
Sissoko(1)
Viviano(1)

Looking Ahead

Palermo come to the Franchi at some point on Saturday, unless Zamp decides to forfeit. Ljajic will not be available. Tomovic will be back for Montella. The state of Pizarro, Aquilani and Roncaglia will have to be determined. Palermo backs are against the wall, but really, nothing but three points is acceptable.

Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Fiorentina v Palermo
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET US Pescara v Fiorentina


Other Teams

standings

Juventus 86 (League winner)
Napoli 75 (secured second place)
Milan 68
Fiorentina 64
Udinese 60
Lazio 58
Roma 58
Inter 53

Fiorentina Scenarios
3rd place - Fiorentina hold the tiebreaker with Milan, so they can get third place with two wins and two ties or worse for Milan. Milan secure third with one win or any dropped point for Fiorentina.

4th place - Udinese hold the tiebreaker with Fiorentina. Should Udinese win both matches, Fiorentina secure 4th place with one win in the last two. Should Udinese drop points in either match, Fiorentina would secure fourth with one tie in the last two matches.

5th place - Fiorentina hold tiebreaker with Lazio, but Roma hold the tiebreaker with Viola. Fiorentina secure 5th place over both with one point, even if both Roma and Lazio win both their matches. Could get 5th with two losses, should Roma drop points.


schedules
Milan
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET AC Milan v AS Roma
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Siena v AC Milan

AS Roma
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET AC Milan v AS Roma
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET AS Roma v Napoli

Udinese
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Udinese v Atalanta
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Internazionale v Udinese

Inter
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Genoa v Internazionale
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Internazionale v Udinese

Lazio
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Lazio v Sampdoria
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Cagliari v Lazio


Relegation battle
Scenarios
Torino - Torino can only be caught by Palermo. Head to head, Torino and Palermo are tied, but Torino hold a +8 goal differential lead. Torino stay up with at least two ties, regardless of Palermo results, or if Palermo win both matches, with just one tie, provided their loss and Palermo's wins don't equal 9 goals. Torino will also stay up if Palermo drop any points

Genoa - Could be caught by either Siena or Palermo. Head to head, Palermo and Genoa are tied, Genoa have a +3 goal differential lead. Siena hold the tiebreaker with Genoa. One win see Genoa through, regardless of other results. Two ties would see Genoa through, provided that Palermo don't win their last two with a goal differential of greater than 4. Should Genoa tie both matches and Palermo win both matches with a goal diff of 3, then they wind up tied and i have no idea what the next tiebreaker is

Palermo - need help. Palermo stay up with two wins and two Torino losses or Two Genoa losses. They also could stay up if Torino has a tie and a loss, provided the goal difference in Torino's loss and the two Palermo wins is greater than 8.They could also stay up with a win and a tie, as long as Genoa lost their last two and the combined goal difference in Genoa's losses and Palermo's win were greater than 3

Siena - Need two wins and two Genoa losses.

standings
Sampdoria 39 (Sampdoria are safe)
Torino 37
Genoa 36 (needs a win and a tie)
Palermo 32 (Palermo and Genoa are tied head to head, Genoa have a 3 goal adv in GD)
Siena 30 (hold tiebreaker with Genoa, need 6 pts and two Genoa losses)
Pescara 22 (already relegated)

schedules
Sampdoria
Saturday, May 11 12:00 ET Lazio v Sampdoria
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Sampdoria v Juventus

Torino
Sunday, May 12 6:30 ET Chievo Verona v Torino
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Torino v Catania

Genoa
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Genoa v Internazionale
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Bologna v Genoa

Palermo
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Fiorentina v Palermo
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Palermo v Parma

Siena
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Napoli v Siena
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET Siena v AC Milan

Pescara
Wednesday, May 8 12:00 ET US Pescara v AC Milan
Sunday, May 12 9:00 ET Catania v US Pescara
Sunday, May 19 2:45 ET US Pescara v Fiorentina

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