November 18, 2012
Sampdoria 3-1 Genoa
The bragging rights are back with Sampdoria for the first time since 2010 as Mauro Icardi's late strike sealed victory over Genoa in tonight's Derby della Lanterna.
There was more at stake than usual in the showdown at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris, with Samp on a run of seven straight defeats and Genoa having lost five in a row.
Andrea Poli certainly lightened the load on Doria boss Ciro Ferrara with a fine opener before Genoa's Cesare Bovo gifted the Blucerchiati a 2-0 lead in comical fashion.
A much improved Genoa hit back through Ciro Immobile after the break, but Icardi ensured an uncertain future for Grifone boss Luigi Del Neri with his strike at the death.
Genoa burst out of the traps as Marco Borriello, Immobile and Juraj Kucka all gave Sergio Romero food for thought, but the Samp keeper enjoyed a relatively quiet half.
In the 19th minute, Enzo Maresca tried his luck from distance under heavy pressure from the Genoa defence.
His weak drive travelled as far as Poli, who controlled the ball before twisting his body to slot beyond a stunned Sebastien Frey. It was perhaps the perfect way for the 23-year-old to score his first goal for Sampdoria.
Icardi introduced himself to Frey by dribbling round the Genoa stopper, only for Andreas Granqvist to narrow the angle and keep the young striker's effort off target.
Genoa's frustration turned to embarrassment in the 36th minute when Bovo conspired to double Samp's lead with a calamitous own goal.
Icardi burst free down the right flank, pulling a cross-cum-shot into the box from the by-line, leaving Bovo to inexplicably clatter the ball into his own net under zero pressure.
The ex-Palermo defender could barely lift his gaze to meet the disapproving looks from his team-mates, and Genoa had a lot of work to do.
Icardi was buoyed by his brush with scoring and came close to consummating his promise before the break.
He was too isolated to convert Nenad Krsticic's pass in the first instance, but Frey needed to be at his best to repel the Samp striker when he sprung the offside trap in stoppage time.
Del Neri spared Bovo's blushes by giving him the second half off, with Juan Manuel Vargas taking his place as hostilities resumed.
Andrea Bertolacci appeared in midfield for Daniel Toszer and he soon made a nuisance of himself by releasing Immobile in the area.
Romero took that challenge in his stride but he was seriously tested by Borriello's snapshot moments later.
A reinvigorated Genoa had not shaken off their physical approach and Kucka was lucky to stay on the pitch following a crunching tackle on Maresca, for which he received just a yellow card.
Bosko Jankovic launched a rocket into the hoardings before Immobile decided to give Krsticic a shove as he left the field to be replaced by Marcelo Estigarribia.
But the mercurial striker channelled that aggression in the right direction as he dragged Genoa back into the contest in the 73rd minute.
When Vargas latched onto a loose ball to work Romero, Immobile was on hand to tuck the rebound away and halve the deficit.
Romero was absent without leave when Vargas volleyed wide and Sampdoria were looking fairly rattled and in danger of throwing their lead away.
But Icardi had deserved a goal for his early display and it arrived two minutes from time.
Substitute Fernando Tissone picked out the 19-year-old Argentinian to clip home his first goal of the season and settle a frenetic derby clash.