With Dodô out for the long-term, Vincenzo Italiano deployed Fabiano Parisi at rightback to give Michael Kayode a break. Lucas Martínez Quarta, Alfred Duncan, Arthur, and Riccardo Sottil all joined the XI as well. Eusebio di Francesco, on the other hand, trotted out the exact XI we predicted.
It was pretty much all Fiorentina from the opening whistle as the visitors’ technical superiority put them solidly in the driver’s seat. Riccardo Sottil had a couple of early chances after he outpaced Anthony Oyono down the left, but the handsomest man in the world’s decision-making let him down as it so often does. M’Bala Nzola also had a few chances escape him, mostly by getting his shots blocked by last ditch tackles. Frosinone had a couple of half chances from set pieces to make us nervous, so Nicolás González naturally settled things with his 3rd headed goal of the season; just because he made it look easy, don’t underrate that finish, or Duncan’s lovely ball into him.
⚽️ | Frosinone 0-1 Fiorentina | Nicolás González— FootColic ⚽️ (@FootColic) September 28, 2023
Sottil and Nzola kept getting and whiffing opportunities, while Frosinone had their best look via Matías Soulé, but LMQ snuffed out his young countryman’s shot. Nzola had a pretty good shout for a penalty and/or last-man foul after Simone Romagnoli dragged him down chasing a long ball, but referee Francesco Fourneau somehow gave the decision against the Viola striker, summing up his day. When halftime arrived, it wasn’t a surprise that Fiorentina were leading, but it was a surprise the margin was just one. The only concern was that Cristiano Biraghi was forced off with injury, leaving Fiorentina with a real problem at fullback.
We might’ve expected Fiorentina to slow down after the break—3 road games in 7 days is a lot—and that’s exactly what happened. A lower tempo, wayward passing even on simple attempts, and mindless dribbling into corners allowed Frosinone to claw back into this one, although the Viola did have more chances on the break (Fourneau again gave a last man foul against Nzola, which needs a long investigation), and Nikola Milenković forced a good save from Turati, but the Canarini built up a head of steam and started to threaten Terracciano’s goal. It took Michael Kayode deflecting a cross to Matías Soulé at the back post to drive the nail into the coffin, but the nail was indeed driven.
Soule scored his first goal for Frosinone pic.twitter.com/nGvfFSGKen— Juventus News Live (@juvenewslive) September 28, 2023
The final 20 minutes were just scuffling back and forth with neither side really looking like scoring, although Frosinone was probably a bit superior as Fiorentina failed to clear its lines and mostly just gasped out the string. The triple blast meant a party in the stands of the Benito Stirpe, though, which should tell you all you need to know: the Ciociari managed to smuggle a point out of this one despite having no business doing so.
Goals: Soulé 70’; González 19’ (ass. Duncan)
Cards: Mazzitelli 51’, Okoli 64’, Oyono 87’; Milenković 22’, Parisi 69’ (nice), Mandragora 90’+2
Fiorentina don’t get any respite and will hope some key players can hit full fitness quickly, as the Viola return to Florence for the first time since beating Atalanta to take on bottomfeeding Cagliari in what certainly looks like a must-win match on Monday. There’s still no time to take a breath, though, as Ferencváros comes to town on Thursday, and then it’s a trip to Napoli on Sunday before the international break gives at least some of these guys a moment to get some rest.