Fiorentina arrived at Torino knowing that nothing but victory would do. Both Fiorentina and the home team sit just a handful of points out of sixth place in Serie A, but nothing about either teams’ form so far this season should give their fans any realistic hope of making a push for European football via the league.
It was Torino who created the first real opportunity on goal as wing back Ola Aina got in front of his defender at the far post, but couldn’t make clean enough contact with a well-struck Lorenzo De Silvestri cross, and put the ball over well over the crossbar. La Viola went on to take the front foot in the game, but couldn’t find any meaningful opportunities to score. The visitors might have had a penalty twenty minutes in, after a Federico Chiesa effort struck the arm of Soualiho Meite, but the referee waved away Chiesa’s claims as Meite’s arm was in line with his body, and the player clearly made no effort to deflect the ball with his arm.
Despite the poor standard of their play, Fiorentina might have gone into the break with a lead, as Jordan Veretout volleyed the ball through a crowded box towards the post, but veteran ‘keeper Salvatore Sirigu did well to read the path of the ball and send it away from the goal. The Italy international would protect his team’s clean sheet again just moments later blocking a close range shot from Kevin Mirallas to ensure Torino went into the break level.
I Granata came out fighting in the second half, and created a number of opportunities for themselves in opening five minutes. First, Iago Falque dribbled through the Fiorentina defence but scuffed his shot off the ankle of Veretout allowing la Viola to clear the ball for a corner, then Andrea Belotti snatched at a chance at the back post and hit the ball across the face of the goal.
With an hour gone, a horrible pass from Gerson let Falque through on goal again, but the Spaniard was expertly held up by Vitor Hugo and could only manage to direct a shot at the feet of Alban Lafont which the Fiorentina goalkeeper deflected away. The home team were in total control of the fixture though, and a reversal of the events of the first few minutes saw De Silvestri waste a good opportunity from an Aina cross. De Silvestri had the ball in the back of the net moments later though, but was very clearly offside as he volleyed past a stationary Lafont from 10-yards out.
Despite having created nothing that could even be considered a half-chance in the second half, it was Fiorentina who would eventually break the deadlock, Giovanni Simeone sending a message to the Viola staff as he picked up the ball in the centre of the park and carried it into the Torino box and forcing a save from Sirigu which was pounced on by Chiesa who finished brilliantly with 86 minutes gone. The remaining ten minutes were dramatically different to the majority of the game. Needing a goal to salvage the result Torino pushed forward recklessly.
The additional space suited Chiesa to no end, and he doubled his tally shortly after, beating Lyanco to a long ball from Bryan Dabo, and deftly placing the ball past Sirigu with the outside of his foot. The goal at first seemed to have been disallowed for a push on Lyanco, but following a VAR review the referee determined that the Brazilian had slipped and the goal was allowed to stand.
Final Score: Torino 0-2 Fiorentina (Chiesa x2)
Lafont - 7: Did what he had to do when called upon, another clean sheet to add to the collection for the young shot stopper
Milenkovic - 6: A quiet game for the Serbian defender, though he give Aina too much room on occasion.
Pezzella - 6: Had little to do through the game, Torino’s chances tended to happen away from him.
Vitor Hugo - 6.5 : Did well to stay in front of Falque after Gerson’s error, without him the Spaniard would have almost certainly scored.
Biraghi - 5.5: Something of an off day for the Italy international who struggled to contain De Silvestri.
Fernandes - 5: Offered very little going forward or defending.
Veretout - 6.5: Might have gotten a goal against a less talented goalkeeper, as has been the case too often this season, his positive impact on the team was limited by a lack of quality around him.
Benassi 6: As is too often the case, Benassi wasn’t involved enough in the game. He did set Simeone free for the first goal though.
Chiesa - 7.5: Great players don’t always perform brilliantly for 90 minutes every game, but they consistently find a way to help their team win. Chiesa was the difference between two poor sides on the day.
Muriel - 5.5: Maybe Simeone wasn’t the problem, Muriel definitely isn’t the answer.
Mirallas - 6: Didn’t impact the game very much outside of his chance in the first half. Still, he deserves credit for an intelligent finish which probably deserved a goal.
Gerson - 5: Professional footballers shouldn’t make the kind of errors Gerson did to set Falque through, and he could’ve cost his team the game.
Simeone - 6.5: was less involved in the game than Fiorentina would have liked after bringing him on, but when the opportunity came he capitalised with a brilliant run to create the first goal.