Monday, February 04, 2008

You know when you've been Pato-ed!

What did I say about playing badly but winning? Me and my big mouth. On Sunday night Fiorentina played one of their best games of recent times and, guess what? They got beat.

Little Pato came off the bench, scored the winner, then hobbled off injured. It would be fair to say few Stranieri have had a bigger impact in a shorter period of time in Serie A. If he keeps going like this he could be amazing.

The game itself started magnificently and then fizzled out. But in the second half it was the Viola who gave everything for the win. However, if you don't put the ball in the net, etc. They were punished by Pato just as they ran out of steam. Also, Kalac was in impressive form - I think it could be a long time until we see Dida back between the sticks.

Elsewhere, what to say about the penalty Inter got against Empoli? If it had been given to Juve we would never have heard the end of it. OK, the Nerazzurri might have won anyway but it did give them a hell of a hand - until Empoli missed their consolation spot-kick.


TrentToffee said...

I've never given much credence to the great Serie 'A' conspiricy theories about one team, usually Juve, being given a certain 'advantage' over another by referees. But having watched the penalty that Inter were gifted yesterday I think I finally 'get it'. It was a shocking decision.

Yesterdays live game was a belter to watch. Siena thoroughly outplayed Roma. Maccarone and Frick were excellent. Totti was at his prima-donnerish worst, and Mexes showed us just how crap he usually is. Roma really missed Juan. Those 3 points will probably mean the difference between Siena staying up and Roma finishing a distant 2nd or 3rd. 8 points ? It might as well be 80. Sorry Spangles, AR.

patcook said...

I agree with TT, 8 points is surely too much even with 17 games to go, especially if they keep getting those kind of penalties.

Pato's injury is a shame. Milan really need him fit and in form for Arsenal.

Aussie Romanista said...

No apology needed Trent. I fully agree with you. Shame as it may be that such an unItalian team will again be wearing the scudetto badge next season.

ginkers said...


It was a bad decision right enough. Mind you, Empoli's spot-kick was pretty soft too. I didn't see that much of the Siena game but they are a good team to watch at the moment. Sadly, Roma always seem to slip up on regular basis.


Even though I was cursing him on Sunday, I want to see Pato back soon.


Only if Roma go on one of their crazy brilliant runs is there any chance of stopping Inter.

ursus arctos said...

We were at the Inter-Empoli game, and without putting on nerazzuro glasses, I really do think you need to look at it in the context of an absolutely shocking game by the ref and his assistants.

In addition to the "soft" penalty given Empoli (a classic "makeup" call in my book), that context would include Vieira's first yellow (for a completely innocuous foul), a host of literally unbelievable offside decisions (the "best" of which was called on a pass made when Ibra was still in his own half by 5 metres) and a series of smaller mistakes.

The ref completely lost control of the game early on and never really got it back.

Juventino said...

Ginkers, I appreciate you saying 'if it were Juve'!! I think it's pretty apparent that calciopoli fixed nothing. It's just the way it always has been. The big teams always got benefits. Juve got the most crap for it because we were usually on top. Now, post-calciopoli, Inter are getting the same benefits they always did, while Milan and Juve aren't because they were embroiled in calciopoli, leaving Inter, who are miles in front, to take all the crap.

Ursus, Empoli's penalty was pretty clear. Materazzi booted Saudati. You can't complain about that.

Juventino said...

Giuseppe Rossi for la nazionale...anyone???

Shame on all of the clubs in Serie A for not signing him last summer!

ursus arctos said...

Juventino, agreed about Rossi; it's a farce that he is playing outside of Italy.

From where we sit, it looked as if Saudati was outside the area when Materazzi kicked him. That's what I thought Ginkers was referring to when he described the call as "soft".

I also disagree about your general point concerning Juve, but then I would (being both a Viola supporter for 30 years and having read Nostra Signora del Dischetto). That shouldn't be read as a refusal to accept that sudditanza psicologica doesn't exist in calcio. It does, just as it exists in every other aspect of Italian life.

ginkers said...

Guys, I think the point I was making was that dodgy penalties will always be given. And because they are more often on the attack, big teams will get more than their share.

I really don't know just how systematic the favouring of Juve was compared to the "non-systematic" favouring of Inter now.

I thought Saudati made a bit of a meal of his penalty. However, he was booted...

patcook said...

I think we need to remember that the teams involved in Calciopoli were all found guilty of match fixing.

And while supporters of those clubs may complaining about flimsy evidence and over zealous prosicutors and judges, it is pretty much a dead certainty that people paid by those clubs were involved in match-fixing.

And I hate to see bad refereeing and corruption bundled into the same basket. Corruption might lead to bad refereeing, but bad refereeing doesn't mean that there is corruption.

I also think its a shame that calciopoli hasn't had any affect on the Italian psyche. You'd think after a major scandal, that dented the reputation of the sport at every level in the country, that people might be a little cautious before they made allegations that could harm the games reputation even further.

Juventino said...

It wasn't a match-fixing scandal. Which matches were fixed?

It was an improper and inappropriate relationship scandal.

patcook said...

juventino, i happily accept that there was no clear evidence of everyone getting together and figuring out the score. when referees and their assisstants are bribed and harassed into favouring a team that is match fixing.

Locking referee's in their changing room because they didn't give you enough dodgy decisions to win the game isn't just "an improper and inappropriate relationship"

And even if it was just as 'innocent' as your wording infers, I'm glad it was dealt with, even if it meant my team got punished too.

And i think the way many of us water down the severity of the scandal or suggest new scandals every time our team loses because of a bad refereeing decision only serves to harm calcio further.

Juventino said...

Pat, I'd happily have followed Juve to Serie D if anything actually changed for the better. I've never seen a scudetto go to a team that didn't deserve it. Except 05/06.

Essentially, I think we were punished because Moggi had a massive ego. I mean, he even claimed that Cardinal Ratzinger only became Pope after signing with GEA. He was full of shit.

If everyones phones were tapped as much I think that Serie A would have become Serie B.

patcook said...

Well lets not forget Moggi's phones were tapped in relation to a doping case. In which the doctor took fall by saying he doped players like Zidane without their consent or knowledge. I mean please. They are professionals, even if they didnt know what was going on they should have taken the time to find out exactly what all those needles were pumping into them. And out of the original phone taps into the drug issue came the first evidence of match fixing and they ran the same defence, that it was one guy acting on his own without anyone else knowing.

And I hardly think Moggi made up evidence to satisfy his own ego. And in any case Juve got punished because they whole club from Moggi down to the supporters enjoyed feeding their own ego's. Do you really believe that no one else in the club ever had a clue? People knew but they turned their back on it 'cos winning made them feel good and kept the cash flowing in.

And I disagree that Calciopoli had no effect what so ever. Although I do think that it was way too soft.