Chances were few and far between for both sides on a poor pitch, though to blame the playing surface would be doing the two teams a very big favour. The missing Luca Cigarini hurt the Bergamaschi as they failed miserably to breach a solid Sicilian back line.
The first half lacked any real emotion or quality football of note. The away side had the two best chances of breaking the deadlock but failed to convert either. On 34 minutes a move down the Catania right allowed Gonazalo Bergessio to slide a cross into the box which Lucas Castro was only inches away from directing into the net, with Andrea Consigli beaten. Argentine winger Alejandro Gomez, a constant thorn down Atalanta’s right hand side, had a good effort palmed away for a corner on 42 minutes and was without doubt the stand-out player of the half.
Despite a couple of long range efforts from German Denis, the home side looked organised but lacking in any incisiveness when attacking and Sicilian keeper Mariano Andujar was no more than a non paying spectator.
The second half was much the same as the first, with efforts on goal almost non existent. Stefano Colantouno’s men made a much more positive attempt to create chances but again failed to trouble Andujar. Giacomo Bonaventura had two efforts from long range which sailed wide of the goal and even new acquisition Marko Livaja could do little to liven up affairs when he replaced Denis with 10 minutes to go.
Francesco Lodi had the away side’s best effort on goal when his free kick on 72 minutes was easily gathered by Consigli.
This error-strewn game was littered with petty fouls and yellow cards as both sides ultimately cancelled each other out. In the final moments Livaja went down in the box claiming a penalty but was rightly booked as there was no contact between him and the defender.
This instantly forgettable draw was a fair result, neither team having done enough to merit victory though Catania will probably be the happier having taken a point from this potentially tricky away tie.