Catanzaro, it's an amusement park: match suspended, then the Giallorossi overturn Venezia in added time on a penalty: fourth place within reach


By John


MARKERS 5' pt Pontisso (C), Idzes (V) 14'; 10' st Idzes (V), 14' and, on penalty, 51' Iemmello (C)

CATANZARO (4-4-2) Fulignati 7; Oliveri 6 (36' st Stoppa 6.5), Scognamillo 6.5, Antonini 7, Veroli 6 (36' st Miranda sv); Sounas 7 (23' st Donnarumma 6.5), Petriccione 6.5 (23' st Verna 6), Pontisso 7, Vandeputte 6.5; Iemmello 7, Ambrosino 6.5 (44' pt Biasci 6). Annex Vivarini 7
VENICE (3-5-2) Joronen 7; Idzes 6.5, Svoboda 5.5, Sverko 5; Zampano 6.5 (35' st Dembele sv), Lella 6 (14' st Altare 6), Tessmann 6.5, Busio 6 (26' st Ellertson 5.5), Bjarkason 6; Pohjanpalo 6 (35' st Gytkjaer sv), Pierini 7 (35' st Jajalo sv). Ann. Vanoli 6
REFEREE Ayroldi of Molfetta 5
NOTE Spectators 11,466, takings of 173,131 euros. Sverko (V) sent off 12' st. Sounas (C), Sverko (V) and Scognamillo (C) are booked. Corners 11-1. Rec. 2'; 6'.

At the “Ceravolo” it's always an amusement park, but this time in the end the fun is only yellow and red. Catanzaro defeats Venezia 3-2, mathematically secures fifth place and continues the hunt for fourth. He does it right at the end of a game in which everything happens. The Eagles immediately go ahead with Pontisso, Venezia equalizes with Idzes on a goal that the referee annuls for offside, but the VAR overturns the decision (which remains doubtful), then a water bomb transforms the pitch into a swimming pool and imposes almost three quarters of an hour of interruption. The restart belongs to the Venetians, who take the lead (Idzes again), then remain with 10 men (red to Sverko), collect the equalizer from Iemmello on a free kick, hold on as much as they can, but at the last of the 3' recoveries they suffer a penalty (great move by Donnarumma) which the captain first gets saved and then scores on the replay. “Mom cinema”, again and again. Catanzaro lacked the scalp of a big player at home: he took it with all the tenacity, pride and qualities of which he is capable. And he almost definitively causes Vanoli's battleship to miss the promotion train.
The start of the match was as intense as the storm that caused it to be interrupted in the 22nd minute. In the end Vivarini preferred Pontisso to Verna and immediately reaped the dividends: the midfielder scored with a dive (in the 5th minute), inserting himself between Idzes and Svoboda, to gore the assist from Sounas's attacking midfield in the center of the area (served by Ambrosino). The midfielder has his second consecutive centre-half.
The goal from Catanzaro, deployed as usual with the 4-4-2, stunned Venezia a bit, who launched themselves in search of an equalizer, but with more enthusiasm than clarity. However, the 1-1 goal comes from a free-kick: Pierini towards Pohjanpalo at the far post and the ball goes to the opposite side for the very free Idzes. First assistant Baccini raises his flag – the Finnish striker's offside seems clear and Ayroldi confirms it, but VAR makes him change his mind after a long check: the doubt that Pohjanpalo is ahead of Veroli is strong even with the images shown on TV. the first thing that doesn't fit is… the sky: from that moment all hell breaks loose, within a few minutes the pitch becomes impassable and the referee is forced to interrupt the match in the 22nd minute.
The storm doesn't last long, the sun also comes out, but the problem is that the drainage works well in almost the entire pitch, except along the strip in front of the benches, under the infamous Distinti building, which was quickly transformed into a real swimming pool .
After two inspections by the race director and the captains, and the work of the company's employees to dispose of the excess water (then they are also helped by the firefighters), the match starts again at 4.15pm.
There is nothing to complain about when the silent check by the VAR (29') brings Ayroldi and Baccini to their senses on the goal of the former Bjarkason, well over the line on Busio's touch in the area served by Pierini at the end of an action started by a throw-in that Venezia takes ahead – in an evidently irregular way – by at least 10 meters compared to the exit point.
Ambrosino out due to injury before the break (Biasci on), Venezia also pushes at the start of the second half, especially in the centre-left area where Pierini is a thorn in the side and bowls for Pohjanpalo, who towers over Oliveri and challenges Fulignati (4') . Catanzaro replies with Sounas: cross shot on the post. The Venetians are physically devastating and move forward from a corner: Sverko stands out, Fulignati saves from Tessmann, Idzes bursts in and doubles the score. But if Venezia are tough, Catanzaro isn't joking: Sverko knocks down Sounas and is sent off for a double yellow, Vandeputte takes the free kick and Iemmello hits the ball with his head: 14th center from the captain, 14th assist from the Belgian in the 14th minute.
The Eagles believe it, Biasci commits Joronen caught by Vandeputte in transition, Vivarini replaces Sounas and Petriccione (exhausted) with Donnarumma and Verna (Biasci top right), it starts raining again (even very heavily in the end), the home coach switches to 3-4-3 (changes the full-backs with Miranda and Stoppa), his team collect corners and an opportunity with Antonini right from a corner (just wide). It all seems to be over, but in the last 3' of injury time Stoppa serves Donnarumma, who sends Idzes to school and is knocked out: clear penalty. Joronen saves Iemmello, VAR repeats (Dembele enters the area first) and the captain scores this time. It's a triumph. Intense, water-soaked and beautiful.