Bologna lifted themselves back into the Serie A Champions League positions with a 2-0 victory over Hellas Verona at the Dall’Ara on Friday evening, with goals coming courtesy of Rossoblu midfielders Giovanni Fabbian and Remo Freuler.

Thiago Motta’s side had been level on Atalanta on 45 points heading into the game, but had an opportunity to temporarily lift themselves into the Serie A top four if they avoided defeat. For Verona, there was a chance to move out of the relegation zone, but it wasn’t to be for Marco Baroni on this occasion.

The game’s first major incident came courtesy of the match officials. Referee Rosario Abisso pulled up after just three minutes of action and required treatment from the Bologna medical staff on the touchline. He was ultimately unable to continue and was replaced by fourth official Giacomo Camlone.

It took eight minutes for play to restart, meaning that there was only five minutes of actual action in the opening 15 at the Dall’Ara.

Verona began brightly after the drop-ball restart, and registered their first shot on target through Ondrej Duda, who sent an almost-30-yard free-kick into the arms of Lukasz Skorupski.

Remo Freuler, who was returning after serving his suspension, picked up a rather harsh yellow card, the first of the game, after 19 minutes, just about catching Tomas Suslov on the follow through of a sliding challenge.

Bologna needed a touch longer to get themselves settled in after the interrupted start to proceedings, but started to look back to their best the longer play continued.

Fabbian came up good for the hosts after 27 minutes. The Rossoblu earned themselves a series of three corners in quick succession. One delivery came in from the right flank from Riccardo Orsolini, the other two from the left from Dan Ndoye.

Ndoye’s second delivery went deep towards Orsolini at the far post, who was able to square neatly back into the six-yard box for Fabbian to poke home from close range. Verona keeper Lorenzo Montipo appealed for a foul, but the replacement referee was having none of it.

Bologna broke dangerously in first half stoppage time, but centre-back Sam Beukema was unable to put the final touches on a ball into the area after his darting run out from the back.

Despite Verona’s promising start, it was very much Bologna who looked the more threatening of the two sides by the interval.

20 minutes into the second period, Verona came within inches of the most unlikely of equalisers. Bologna ‘keeper Skorupski misplaced his throw out from the area, which landed straight at the feet of Suslov, whose looping effort somehow bounced just before the goalline and marginally wide of the post.

Following their scare, Bologna managed to put themselves two up less than a minute later. Fabbian became the provider this time around.

After a neat combination on the edge of the area and a slight touch of good fortune, the former Inter youth product sent a chipped cross into the centre of the area, perfectly placed for the onrushing Freuler to knock home on the volley for 2-0.

That was the Swiss international’s first goal in Rossoblu colours and his first since 2021 in Serie A, when he was still playing for Atalanta.

Verona had one last chance to get themselves on the scoresheet approaching the final whistle when Stefan Mitrovic broke with intent in injury time. He released fellow substitute Darko Lazovic, who in turn squared to Thomas Henry, who was not quite able to apply the finishing touches.

Bologna held on for their win, and their clean sheet and now find themselves in fourth place in Serie A. Atalanta, now in fifth do currently have two games in hand, but now have a three-point gap to make up.

As for Verona, they will spend another week in the Serie A relegation zone, as they sit in 18th with 20 points from 26 matches, with all the teams around them still due to play this weekend.

Full time: Bologna 2-0 Verona

Fabbian (B) 27′, Freuler (B) 65′.

23-02-2024 19:45
MatchDay 26

Player statistic

1st half
Remo Freuler Yellow card 20'    
Giovanni Fabbian
(Assist: Riccardo Orsolini)
Goal 27'    
    45+6' Yellow card Ondrej Duda
2nd half
Remo Freuler
(Assist: Giovanni Fabbian)
Goal 65'    
Lewis Ferguson Yellow card 69'    
    79' Yellow card Juan Cabal

Match statistic

58
Possession %
42
12
Total shots
7
3
Shots on target
3
5
Shots off target
3
4
Blocked shots
1
11
Corners
1
3
Offsides
3
12
Fouls
15
Bologna
Verona

Starting lineups

28
Goalkeeper
26
Defender
31
Defender
3
Defender
75'
15
80
Midfielder
81'
19
Midfielder
8
Midfielder
82'
11
Attacker
82'
9
Attacker
7
75'
1
Goalkeeper
Defender
58'
23
32
Defender
27
Defender
90
Midfielder
87'
33
Midfielder
82'
25
Midfielder
31
Midfielder
Attacker
58'
17
Attacker
82'

Substitutes

33
56
Midfielder
82
Midfielder
23
Goalkeeper
34
Goalkeeper
6
Midfielder
Attacker
4
Defender
16
Defender
22
75'
29
75'
20
Midfielder
81'
10
Attacker
82'
17
Midfielder
82'
99
42
Defender
16
Goalkeeper
34
Goalkeeper
19
Defender
6
Midfielder
37
Midfielder
7
Attacker
Attacker
58'
38
58'
9
Attacker
82'
21
Midfielder
82'
8
Midfielder
87'

 

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