Fiorentina almost paid the price for wasting so many scoring opportunities, but squeezed past Chievo 2-1 with Marcelo Larrondo’s debut goal.
The Viola are a bit of a Jekyll and Hyde team, following a 4-1 demolition of Inter with a 2-1 defeat at Bologna on Tuesday evening – that tie delayed due to snow. David Pizarro crucially returned from suspension, but Juan Cuadrado was banned with the injured Michele Camporese and Giuseppe Rossi. German Marvin Compper was given his debut in place of Stefan Savic. Chievo were looking to improve their away record, but had Perparim Hetemaj suspended.
Fiorentina took only four minutes to break through, as Manuel Pasqual curled a precise free kick over the wall and into the near top corner.
Cyril Thereau should’ve equalised, but turned a diving free header wide from the penalty spot when totally unmarked. The Viola defence was completely caught out by Francesco Acerbi’s cross from the right.
Cristian Puggioni flapped a Pasqual cross off the head of Luca Toni, then Adem Ljajic’s long-range effort bounced just wide of the upright.
Stevan Jovetic exchanged passes with Ljajic to roll across for Borja Valero, who toe-poked it inches wide of the far post. Jovetic then missed a great chance with his header wide from a Borja Valero assist.
Nenad Tomovic’s header from a Pizarro cross was well parried at the near top corner, then the Pasqual follow-up went over the bar.
Fiorentina paid the price for wasting so many scoring opportunities, as Chievo drew level. It was a classic counter-attack and Roberto Guana rolled across from the right for Isaac Cofie’s cool daisy-cutter finish.
Chievo risked taking the lead after the restart, as Alberto Paloschi ran on to a goal kick that Tomovic failed to deal with a fired over the bar from a very promising position.
Borja Valero drilled wide, then there was a double opportunity as Toni came sliding in to deflect a Pasqual free kick on to the post and Marcelo Larrondo fired the follow-up wide from six yards.
Fiorentina were pouring forward for 15 minutes and it paid off with a goal. Toni got his head to a Pasqual free kick, but it was wayward and turned into an assist for Larrondo to nod in from close range at the back post.