STADIO ENNIO TARDINI (Parma) – Despite showing signs of improvement again under Roberto D’Aversa, Parma suffered a 2-0 defeat at home to Sampdoria in Serie A on Sunday evening.
Both Juraj Kucka and Gervinho, twice, were thwarted by the woodwork, but two goals against the run of play allowed a clinical Sampdoria to head back to Liguria with three important points claimed.
The loss will come as a bitter blow to the Gialloblu, though, who have collected just one point from the three games played since D’Aversa returned to replace Fabio Liverani on the bench at the Tardini.
Parma, and Juraj Kucka in particular, threatened the most in the first half. Andrea Conti drew Emil Audero’s first save of the night, and Juraj Kucka beat the Samp ‘keeper only to have Omar Colley clear his effort off the line after doing well to get back to cover. Gervinho came close as well but might have slipped in Andreas Cornelius rather than shooting from range, although Audero did have to get down fast to turn his shot onto the post.
But it was the Blucerchiati who got themselves ahead through an unlikely source in Maya Yoshida. A cross fell kindly to the centre-back as it bounced off Andreas Cornelius, allowing him to turn and convert inside six yards.
Gervinho had another chance when Kucka put him through on goal, but Audero raced out of his area and the Ivorian was unable to round him.
Then Samp got their second, and it again came as a surprise. Parma were looking to play from deep but Hernani needlessly conceded possession to Gaston Ramirez. The Uruguayan approached the area and squared to Keita Balde, who shot into Luigi Sepe’s bottom-left corner.
Kucka remained Parma’s biggest threat though. A deflected effort looped and forced Audero into another good save, and the Slovak had a shot crash off the crossbar and behind soon after.
The woodwork continued to frustrate Parma in the second half as Gervinho hit the crossbar from a tight angle, and both goalkeepers had to do well to deny volleys from Kucka and Mikkel Damsgaard, respectively, within moments of one another.