Udinese beat Crotone 2-1 in Serie A on Saturday afternoon at the Stadio Ezio Scida to compile the home side’s misery, with relegation more likely by the week.
Captain Rodrigo De Paul had a wild afternoon, grabbing a goal in each half for the Friulani before being sent off late on for a terrible tackle. Udinese’s top scorer got one just before the break and the second after Simy had briefly levelled the scoring from the penalty spot with his 17th goal of the season. The Argentine then saw red in a moment of madness.
Crotone started in their usual, positive manner and had the first chance of the game through Salvatore Molina after four minutes, but his header was easily saved by Juan Musso.
The game ebbed and flowed with both teams having half-chances before Molina unleashed a rocket from outside the area that flew narrowly over the bar after 28 minutes.
The away team began to get a hold of the game. Roberto Pereyra having a good chance to make their possession pay off but his shot from the 18-yard mark just went wide of the post. The opener came for Luca Gotti’s team when De Paul got his seventh Serie A goal of the season by firing into the top corner after being given ample time to readjust his body, shaping twice before curling the ball beyond Alex Cordaz in the 41st minute.
The first 20 minutes of the second half ticked by uneventfully until the home side were awarded a penalty for handball by Nahuel Molina. Simy stepped up, staggered his run, and tucked the penalty home with aplomb for his 17th goal of the season.
De Paul bagged his second of the game on the 74th minute after controlling Pereyra’s cross perfectly before dribbling into the box and slotting home with ease for his eighth of the season.
Simy almost drew his team level and himself level with Luis Muriel on 18 league goals but his effort came back off the post with two minutes left to play.
There was time for one more piece of late drama, De Paul souring an otherwise great afternoon after being shown a straight red card for a bad tackle in the last minute of the game.
The away team remain 11th in Serie A while Crotone still find themselves 12 points from safety with two more games played compared to 17th-placed Torino and have now failed to keep a clean sheet in their last 19 league outings.