Despite these teams being even on points and hoping to catch Monza in 8th for an outside chance of Europe next year, this felt more like a friendly for Fiorentina: Vincenzo Italiano rotated his entire XI outside of Igor, obviously hoping to keep his starters fresh ahead of the Coppa Italia final on Wednesday.
It was pretty quiet. Torino had a couple of chances getting in behind Fiorentina’s high line, but Lucas Martínez Quarta and Igor shut most of them down before they really got ticking, and Michele Cerofolini took care of the rest. The hosts came close a couple of times, with Nikola Vlašić looking particularly lively, but didn’t really have the necessary quality. Fiorentina didn’t muster a shot on target although the Rickies—Sottil and Saponara—each created a couple of opportunities. No goals felt like a fair reflection of play, which suited Italiano and company just fine.
It took all of 3 minutes for Fiorentina to take the lead via Luka Jović, who headed home Christian Kouamé’s glorious cross to score with his first touch. It’s a much-needed confidence boost for the misfiring striker and the sort of chance we expect him to bury.
COLPO DI TESTA DI LUKA JOVIĆ!!!— Football Report (@FootballReprt) May 21, 2023
CHE BEL ASSIST DI CHRISTIAN KOUAMÉ!!!pic.twitter.com/qZnVXloQzt
Fiorentina kept up the pressure, pinning Torino back for the next several minutes and looking miles better. They had a chance when Riccardo Saponara’s cross clearly hit Brice Djidji’s arm, but referee Luca Massimi didn’t even check the screen. Il Toro eventually dug itself out of the hole, though, and fought back. The goal originated from an unlikely source: defender Alessandro Buongiorno rumbled down the wing and hit in a low cross for Antonio Sanabria, who’d gotten in front of Igor and turned it past Michele Cerofolini. It was hardly clinical defending or goalkeeping but probably no less than Torino deserved.
CHE BEL GOL DI ANTONIO SANABRIA!— Football Report (@FootballReprt) May 21, 2023
ASSIST DI ALESSANDRO BUONGIORNO!pic.twitter.com/meOv6Fs0DK
Even though Torino wanted more, Fiorentina’s defense held firm and kept things pretty quiet. There were half chances at either end, but the full time whistle marked the end of a game that rarely ventured above a simmer.
Goals: Sanabria 66’ (ass. Buongiorno); Jović 48’ (ass. Kouamé)
Cards: Singo 60’; Mandragora 19’, Bianco 77’
Fiorentina drop to 11th place, even with Torino and Bologna on points but trailing on head-to-head results. More importantly, though, the Viola got through the match almost unscathed—Riccardo Saponara was forced off after a slipping on the very slick turf—and rested the starting XI ahead of Wednesday’s Coppa Italia final against Inter Milan. Next stop Rome, baby.