Fiorentina will resume the title of Capolista after a thrilling win at the rockin' Stadio Luigi Ferraris against a Sampdoria team that seemed to be all sound and no fury. Here are the really impressive numbers from the match; as always, they're from WhoScored.com.
|Possession||Passes (short/long)||Passing success||Crosses/attempted||Dribbles/attempted||Shots (on target)||Shots inside/outside area||Tackles/attempted||Interceptions||Aerial duels won attempted||Fouls||Yellow/red cards||Corners||Offsides|
|Sampdoria||42%||453 (384/57)||79%||2/12||5/9||3 (2)||1/2||15/26||7||2/4||23||3/0||1||4|
|Fiorentina||58%||626 (547/64)||88%||2/13||11/18||20 (7)||12/8||16/21||14||2/4||10||3/0||8||3|
|Short passes/attempted||Long passes/attempted||Crosses/attempted||Dribbles/attempted||Shots (on target)||Shots inside/outside area||Touches||Possession lost||Tackles/attempted||Interceptions||Successful aerial battles||Fouls committed/suffered||Yellow/red cards||Offsides||Saves||Goals||Assists||Minutes|
|Valero||63/71||1/1||0/2||2/4||1 (1)||0/1||87||3||2/3||1||0||1/6||Yellow/red cards||0||0||0||0||90|
|Marcos Alonso||27/28||1/1||1/2||1/2||0 (0)||0/0||34||0||0/0||1||0||0/1||0/0||0||0||0||0||23|
Not so much a battle of formations as a clash of philosophies on this one. Paulo Sousa did well to stick to his guns and keep Fiorentina passing the ball through the midfield, rather than succumbing to the relentless Sampdoria and hoofing balls to Nikola Kalinic, whose excellent holdup play always makes route one a decent option. Paulo clearly told the lads to weather the storm in the first half and then control the second, and that's exactly what they did. Quick thoughts: While he didn't have much to do this game, Ciprian Tatarusanu showed that, even with his dicey distribution, he's an above-average keeper because he's so quick off his line to claim through balls. Hats off to Facundo Roncaglia, who's been outstanding for the past month, his inexplicable pass to Eder aside. With Ronca and Davide Astori beside him, Gonzalo Rodriguez is playing a more reserved, less frantic style of game as well. Even when Milan Badelj isn't passing the ball well, he finds a way to be useful; look at how often he won the ball back. Borja Valero and Josip Ilicic seem to be figuring out their roles as the playmakers; Borja drops deep and pulls the strings, while Josip plays as more of a classic number ten, instead of dropping deep as he was earlier this year. The team's passing has improved dramatically this season, and is maybe most evident in how few aerial challenges Kalinic has engaged in over the past month; the team is keeping the ball on the ground and passing through opposing defenses, rather than over them. See any obvious trends or quirks that aren't listed here? Think that statistical analysis is dumb (hi, Mr. Redknapp)? Give us a shout in the comments