STADIO ARTEMIO FRANCHI (Florence) – Fiorentina and Genoa managed to avoid relegation to Serie B, as they drew 0-0 at the Stadio Franchi in the final match day of the 2018/19 Serie A.
The Viola and the Grifone managed to book a place in Serie A 2019/20 thanks to Inter’s victory over Empoli, meaning the latter side is relegated to Serie B.
It was one of the warmest atmospheres of the season at the Stadio Franchi, but the teams struggled to impress in the first half.
With Vincenzo Montella banned after being sent off in the previous game, Fiorentina lacked direction, but the same can be said about Genoa, despite having Cesare Prandelli on the bench.
Held back by fear, and with an eye to what was happening at the Stadio Giuseppe Meazza between Inter and Empoli, both sides struggles in the opening half an hour, bar a couple of shots by Luis Muriel and Federico Chiesa, which were easily blocked by Ionut Radu.
The Grifone almost scored with their first chance of the match, on 35 minutes, with a header coming out of the mix, but it was kept out brilliantly by Alban Lafont.
Muriel was denied the opener by a Domenico Criscito block, with the first half ending goalless.
The second half continued as the first had ended, especially after Inter took the lead over Empoli, meaning Fiorentina and Genoa knew a draw would be enough for both to be safe.
The teams slowed down the pace of the game even more, keeping a boring possession and waiting to know what was going on at the Giuseppe Meazza.
With 15 minutes left to play, news arrived that Empoli had drawn against Inter, meaning Genoa needed a win to stay up. The Grifone inevitably started attacking, only to slow down again as Radja Nainggolan gave Inter a second lead.
The players stopped trying to score, waiting for the final whistle in Milan to ..
Fiorentina ended the season winless in 14 games, having scored just one goal in the last seven. A terrible end to a mediocre season, with the consolation of having at least kept a place in Serie A. Now owners Della Valle will most probably sell the club to Rocco Commisso, ending a trophy-less 17 year era in Florence.
Genoa somehow also avoided relegation, managing to get the job done thanks to Inter’s victory over Empoli.
The Franchi saluted both teams with boos, ending an embarrassing season for both Fiorentina and Genoa.
FEAR AND CALCULATIONS
Both sides at risk of going down, and visibly nervous and scared, and both hopeful of having good news from Milan, possibly a quick victory by Inter. With these premises, Genoa and Fiorentina lacked the will to be proactive and attack, being careful not to leave spaces to the opponent and holding on to possession, waiting for something to happen. This lead to one of the least entertaining encounters of the season from a purely aesthetical perspective. Of course, with plenty of things on the line, the tension was high from beginning to end, and having all the meaningful Serie A games at the same time made it tasty for a neutral supporter.