Sampdoria went crashing to a fourth defeat on the trot, as Cagliari continued their winning run under new boss Ivo Pulga.
The Blucerchiati had a stunning start to the campaign, but it had hit a brick wall of two draws and three consecutive defeats. Cagliari, on the other hand, had won both games since Massimo Ficcadenti was sacked in favour of Pulga and Diego Lopez.
Sampdoria’s last Serie A victory over Cagliari was in 1996-97. Sergio Romero and Andrea Costa were suspended along with the injured Pedro Obiang, Nicola Pozzi, Enzo Maresca and Krsticic. The Sardinians had to do without Andrea Cossu and Mauricio Pinilla.
The home side poured forward from the start, but Eder and Marcelo Estigarribia got in each others’ way from a promising position, while Daniele Gastaldello’s header whistled wide.
It was all Samp and Estigarribia tested Michael Agazzi with a left-foot snapshot, while at the other end Davide Astori just failed to get the final touch to a Thiago Ribeiro free kick.
Despite all the pressure, it was Cagliari who took the lead straight after the restart. A Thiago Ribeiro cross was whipped in from the right for Dessena’s diving header, as the ex-Sampdoria man got between two defenders.
Samp thought they had equalised when Agazzi parried a fierce Eder free kick into the path of Gastaldello, who incredibly nodded the rebound off target in front of an open goal!
Gianni Munari nodded the ball in the net from a free kick flashed across the face of goal to the back post, but it was ruled offside. Replays suggest Munari was not offside, but Maxi Lopez was and he allowed the ball through, so was participating in the move.
Tommaso Berni performed a spectacular save in the final seven minutes, as the shot from distance took a deflection off Rossini, but he flew to palm it off the line.