ITALIAN SERIE A

Oreste Granillo

Referee: Luca Banti | Attendance: 10000

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Reggina

  • Fabio Ceravolo 26'
  • Franco Brienza 49'

2 - 1

FT

Cagliari

  • Andrea Lazzari 18'

Reggina 2-1 Cagliari

A defiant Reggina came from behind to beat Cagliari this afternoon and keep their Serie A hopes alive.

Cagliari took 18 minutes to break the deadlock through Andrea Lazzari but Fabio Ceravolo equalised shortly afterwards.

And Franco Brienza scored early in the second half to seal three priceless points for the hosts.

Reggina have leapfrogged Lecce into 19th position but still have a mountain to climb to beat the drop as they head into the last two rounds of games four points from safety.

Nevio Orlandi's side entered the clash at the Oreste Granillo stadium against ninth-place Cagliari knowing that a defeat coupled with a Torino win would seal their fate.

Torino surprisingly won 2-1 at Napoli, but Reggina made sure they took command against a toothless Cagliari to secure the points.

The hosts threatened in the seventh minute when Luca Vigiani's header from a corner forced a good save from Cagliari goalkeeper Federico Marchetti.

The hosts dominated the early possession and twice had chances to break the deadlock with Ceravolo's left-footed volley and Edgar Barretto's 30-yard strike going wide.

Despite their strong start, Reggina shot themselves on the foot.

A poor defensive pass by Bruno Cirillo was intercepted by Lazzari, who surged into the area before firing past Reggina goalkeeper Christian Puggioni.

Cagliari's joy was shortlived, though, as Reggina equalised seven minutes later.

Emil Hallfredsson's assist found Ceravolo, whose right-footed strike inside the area beat Marchetti.

Ceravolo thought he had struck his second shortly after but his close-range effort was cleared off the line with Marchetti already beaten.

Hallfredsson came close to putting his team ahead on the half-hour mark, but his stinging 30-yard drive from was saved by Marchetti.

The hosts could have taken the lead again before the break but Brienza's close-range header from Antonino Barilla's cross went inches wide of the far post.

Reggina picked up where they left off in the second half and Brienza forced Marchetti to make a good save with a powerful left-footed strike from outside the area.

And their efforts were rewarded soon after.

Substitute Francesco Cozza fed Brienza inside the area, who fired home.

With Cagliari offering little opposition, Reggina continued to surge forward and were unlucky not to make 3-1 when Brienza played a one-two with Cozza, who struck inches wide of the near post.

At the other end, Jeda forced Puggioni to fully stretch to clear his right-footed strike from the edge of the area.

With 15 minutes remaining, Lazzari had a chance to level the score but his left-footed strike from Daniele Ragatzu's assist was met by a fine save from Puggioni, much to the relief of the home fans.

The Amaranto were now defending deep but they held on for a crucial win.

Reggina now travel to Rome to meet Lazio next weekend knowing that anything but a win could see them relegated.