Silvio Berlusconi’s Monza will be in Serie A for the first time in their history after a thrilling extra time 4-3 comeback win over Pisa in the Serie B promotion play-off final.
Lecce and Cremonese had already secured their top flight status during the regular season, with Monza and Pisa finishing joint third on 67 points.
Monza had won the first leg 2-1, so with the away goals rule scrapped, a Pisa victory by one clear goal would spark extra time and perhaps even penalties. Both sides finished the regular season on 67 points.
It took all of 49 seconds for Pisa to get the goal they needed, a Pietro Beruatto cross from the left, Lorenzo Pirola not realising that Ernesto Torregrossa was right behind him and ready to tap in at the back post.
Pisa added a second within nine minutes, Hjortur Hermansson’s glancing header in off the inside of the far post from six yards on another Beruatto cross.
Monza woke up and after Patrick Ciurria’s tricky free kick, they got one back with Jose Machin firing in from 12 yards after Dany Mota Carvalho’s knock-down. Pisa had appeals for handball, but Carlos Augusto’s arm was flush to the body.
There was also controversy when Samuele Birindelli was booked for handball when he was arguably last man, as Monza wanted him sent off.
69 – #Monza have been promoted in Serie A for the first time in their history. They will be the 69th different club to play in Serie A – the 12th different Lombardy’s side. Welcome. pic.twitter.com/BLmdYjP5LY
— OptaPaolo 🏆 (@OptaPaolo) May 29, 2022
Giovanni Stroppa’s Monza got their equaliser when Maxime Leverbe horribly gave it away playing out from the back and substitute Christian Gytkjaer was sent through to place a snooker shot into the far bottom corner.
It still wasn’t over, as at the 90th minute Giuseppe Mastinu smashed a shot on the half-volley into the net from outside the box for 4-4 on aggregate and forced extra time for the first time in a promotion play-off since June 2006.
Monza restored their advantage with a surprisingly free Luca Marrone header from four yards after a short corner kick.
Pisa penalty appeals were waved away, as the ball struck Luca Caldirola’s head first and then his arm.
Monza were founded in 1912, went bankrupt in 2016 and had to start again from the amateur leagues, purchased by former Milan patron Berlusconi in 2018. They earned promotion to Serie B immediately, but lost the play-off semi-finals in 2020-21.
Pisa 3-4 Monza (4-6 agg)
Torregrossa 1 (P), Hermansson 9 (P), Machin 20 (M), Gytkjaer 78, 101 (M), Mastinu 90 (P), Marrone 96 (M)