Sassuolo came back from the David Okereke opener to beat Venezia 3-1 with Domenico Berardi and Davide Frattesi among those on target.
The Neroverdi were in need of a boost, but Jeremie Boga had flu symptoms, with Pedro Obiang and Filippo Romagna injured. Venezia missed Mattia Aramu, Antonio Vacca, Dennis Johnsen and Daan Heymans, so brought Sofiane Kiyine into the starting XI among three changes.
Giacomo Raspadori had penalty appeals waved away for a Ridgeciano Haps nudge, then the hosts lost Filip Djuricic to a muscular problem.
Thomas Henry couldn’t keep his header down at the back post on an Okereke cross, but they did break the deadlock soon after.
Henry was offside, but left the ball to Okereke, who cut inside from the left for a right-footed curler into the far top corner. Andrea Consigli got his fingertips to it, but not enough to prevent the goal.
It did not last long, as Domenico Berardi ran along the edge of the box with the ball until he spotted the gap between bodies to blast in at the far bottom corner.
Berardi almost turned it around completely moments later, denied by Sergio Romero from close range on a Gianluca Scamacca assist, then a desperate Vlad Chiriches tackle and acrobatic Consigli save prevented Okereke from making it 2-1 to Venezia on the counter.
Sassuolo did take the lead after the restart, as Junior Hamed Traore’s in-swinging corner took a touch off Henry at the near post and surprised Venezia.
The hosts began to dominate as the game wore on, Romero sticking out a leg to deny Berardi, but the goalkeeper could do nothing when Raspadori sent Davide Frattesi through the middle.
Francesco Forte had the ball in the net twice with fine volleys, but both times had wandered offside.
Mert Muldur also wasted the chance to add a fourth, firing straight at Romero after a strong Gregoire Defrel counter.
Yet Venezia could’ve made it 3-2 in stoppages, Ceccaroni’s glancing header from a corner cleared off the line by Maxime Lopez.
Sassuolo 3-1 Venezia
Okereke 32 (V), Berardi 37 (S), Henry og 50 (S), Frattesi 67 (S)