Conference League Fiorentina 2-1 Twente: Viola take play-offs lead

Fiorentina had a perfect first half with Nico Gonzalez and Arthur Cabral goals, then fell away as the Conference League play-off went on, but still secured a 2-1 win over FC Twente.

The second leg of this play-off will be next Thursday in the Netherlands and there is no away goals rule, so if they end up level on aggregate, it goes to extra time and maybe even penalties. It was the Viola’s first European fixture since February 2017.

Igor, Szymon Zurkowski and Gaetano Castrovilli were injured, with Giacomo Bonaventura not fully fit, as Vincenzo Italiano made several changes from the side that beat Cremonese 3-2 in Serie A on Sunday. Twente only missed Wout Brama, as Ramiz Zerrouki shook off a knock to start.

See how the game unfolded on the Liveblog.

It took just 61 seconds to break the deadlock, a Riccardo Sottil back-heel flick near the corner flag, Cristiano Biraghi floated in a cross from the left and Nico Gonzalez was allowed a free header from 10 yards.

Arthur Cabral’s header and an Alfred Duncan effort were off target, but Sottil was again involved when he blazed down the left and rolled across for Cabral to come sliding in from six yards for 2-0.

The first real Twente chance came on 40 minutes, a Michel Vlap free kick whistling just wide of the near post, but Cabral’s header from a Biraghi corner was palmed off the line by Lars Unnerstall.

The visitors pushed hard after the restart and got on the scoresheet when Vaclav Cerny sprung the offside trap – although the position was very tight without VAR – to meet the Gijs Smal pass and slip past on-rushing Terracciano.

This was Twente’s sixth game of the season in all competition, compared to Fiorentina’s second, so there was a difference in match fitness as the game wore on.

Fiorentina 2-1 Twente

Nico Gonzalez 2 (F), Cabral 31 (F), Cerny 64 (T)

Fiorentina: Terracciano; Venuti (Dodo 86), Milenkovic, Nastasic, Biraghi; Duncan (Mandragora 61), Amrabat, Maleh; Nico Gonzalez (Kouame 86), Cabral (Jovic 69), Sottil (Kone 61)

FC Twente: Unnerstall; Brenet, Propper, Pleguezelo (Cerny 46), Smal; Zerrouki (Steijn 89), Vlap; Sadilek, Rots (Hilgers 46), Misidjan (Tzolis 77); Van Wolfswinkel

Ref: Stefanski (POL)

4 Comments on “Conference League Fiorentina 2-1 Twente: Viola take play-offs lead”

  1. Decent result, given a Dutch club isn’t the easiest draw.

    If they get knocked out they’ll be dragging down Serie A’s already shaky coefficient.

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