Fiorentina held by 10-man Torino in dent to their European hopes

 

Vanja Milinkovic Savic of Torino Fc looks dejected during the Serie A TIM match between Torino FC and ACF Fiorentina - Serie A TIM at Stadio Olimpico di Torino on March 2, 2024 in Turin, Italy.

Fiorentina were held to a 0-0 stalemate by Torino as their quest for Europe took a dent.

The Viola, last season’s beaten UEFA Europa Conference League runners-up to West Ham, stay seventh with this result but edge a point closer to Bologna, Roma, and Atalanta who sit above them, with the latter three points clear of Vincenzo Italiano’s side.

In a drab affair at the Olimpico Grande Torino, it was in fact the hosts, who are now 10th in the table, who came closest to breaking the deadlock, with Duvan Zapata seeing his strike chalked off five minutes before half-time.

The Colombian fed off a long punt from Vanja Milinkovic-Savic, the home goalkeeper, bulldozing his way past Nikola Milenkovic before crashing an effort into the roof of the net, beyond the flailing Pietro Terracciano.

However, it was ruled out by VAR for an alleged foul on Milenkovic by Zapata, and the sides went in level at the interval.

That wasn’t before Samuele Ricci, the Torino midfielder who had replaced the injured Ivan Ilic on nine minutes, was dismissed for a second yellow card within two minutes.

The 22-year-old was first booked for an elbow on Fiorentina winger Nico Gonzalez, before a second caution and a red followed for dissent after the midfielder was fouled by Arthur.

Ivan Juric’s side remained spirited in the second half, with right wing-back Raoul Bellanova denied by the legs of Terracciano at the near post, before Milinkovic-Savic was on hand to save a header from Giacomo Bonaventura.

Zapata went close with a header once more on 71 minutes before Gonzalez tested Milinkovic-Savic again, but neither side could find that finishing touch that would have given them three big points to haul them closer to those elusive European places.

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