Marten De Roon’s scorching finish gave Atalanta the deserved victory away to sluggish Bologna, who continue their poor form.
The season was starting to fall apart for Gian Piero Gasperini’s men, who in the last couple of weeks had gone out of the Coppa Italia and Europa League. Their chances of qualifying for Europe again were also increasingly slim, but they visited a Bologna side in crisis. Giancarlo Gonzalez sat out a ban after their defeat to SPAL with Rodrigo Palacio, Riccardo Orsolini and Andrea Poli injured. Mattia Destro was dropped following his astounding miss from a yard in last week’s defeat to SPAL.
History was on Atalanta’s side, having won their last four meetings with Bologna, home and away.
Simone Verdi’s free kick was deflected inches past the upright and Felipe Avenatti saw his header well saved by Etrit Berisha, as Bologna had a bright start.
However, the hosts lost Blerim Dzemaili to a head injury and Atalanta wasted a huge chance, as Papu Gomez went clear from midfield and ran towards goal, but tried to be too altruistic and rolled across for a teammate when he should’ve gone for it.
At the other end, Timothy Castagne performed a decisive block on Adam Masina after Verdi’s scuffed shot turned into an assist.
Gomez had another counter-attack and this time aimed at the target, but it was charged down in the D, and Marten De Roon drilled wide.
Atalanta pushed harder in the second half and Antonio Mirante denied Barrow from close range, but could do little when Josip Ilicic rolled to the edge of the box for De Roon’s scorcher into the far top corner.
It could easily have been more, but Mirante kept the scoreline down in the final minutes on Ilicic with a one-handed save and Rafael Toloi close-range header.
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