Samp beat Varese

Sampdoria return to Serie A

June 10, 2012
By ESPN staff

Sampdoria earned promotion back into Serie A on Saturday night with a 1-0 victory away at Varese, securing a 4-2 aggregate win.

Nicola Pozzi was the hero for Sampdoria
GettyImagesNicola Pozzi was the hero for Sampdoria

Trailing 3-2 from the first leg in midweek, Varese knew a win by any scoreline would send them up with the tiebreaker in the event of an aggregate draw being league position. Varese finished fifth with Samp four points behind.

But the home side could not find a way through at Stadio Franco Ossola, and they were hit by a sucker punch in the 91st minute when Nicola Pozzi scored the only goal of the game.

Varese have been languishing in Italy's lower leagues since 1985 and only returned to Serie B in 2010. They also reached the play-offs last season but lost to Padova in the semi-finals.

Sampdoria coach Giuseppe Iachini dedicated promotion to the fans post the match, with the club back in the top flight after only one season in Serie B.

"It has never happened before that the team who finished sixth wins the play-offs,'' Iachini said on the club's official website. "I am so happy for our fans, because it gives us a beautiful satisfaction to turn around a difficult situation.''

Sampdoria join Pescara and Torino in earning promotion to Serie A.