Serie A Fantasy Recap – Round 31

Standing’s implications: Napoli halted Inter’s run at 11 wins, but the Nerazzurri’s lead over Milan remains comfortable even though the Devil finally won one at San Siro, over Genoa. The Partenopei instead gained a point on the fourth place as Atalanta came out on top in the head-to-head clash with Juventus. Lazio continue to lurk as they outgunned Benevento in a goal-fest, while Roma lost more ground as Torino torpedoed them.

The Granata successfully responded to Cagliari’s stupendous rally over Parma and are now on a par with Fiorentina and the Sanniti on the standings. The Viola got beat by Sassuolo. Spezia and Genoa are two points above them as the Aquilotti were throttled by Bologna. Udinese returned to winning ways by exploiting the match-up with Crotone. Sampdoria defeated Verona in the not-so-meaningful race to the eighth spot.

Confirmations: two consecutive goals for Ante Rebic, Mattia Destro and Borja Mayoral. Another paydirt for Antonio Sanabria, while Rodrigo De Paul single-handedly downed Crotone with a brace, outdueling Simy, who just continues to hit the net. Juraj Kucka bagged his seventh goal of the year, while Dennis Man has knocked it on goal in two of the last three matches. Gaston Pereiro is turning into an off-the-bench weapon. Darko Lazovic kept it going with a stellar free-kick, Manolo Gabbiadini and Joaquin Correa with successful PKs. Musa Barrow delivered, but it was Mattias Svanberg that propelled his side with a twofer.

Guess who is back: Ciro Immobile got the monkey off his back, even though his day was not fully satisfying. Christian Eriksen finally managed to capitalize on his good performance with a vicious strike. Domenico Berardi converted two penalty kicks upon returning from injury. Riccardo Orsolini resurfaced after nine quiet appearances. Jakub Jankto last scored in mid-December, Giacomo Bonaventura in late January. Leonardo Pavoletti snapped out of a six-game drought. Razvan Marin had not made the stat-sheet in five months. Marco Sau had last come through in early January and also Nicolas Viola resurrected from a lull with a PK.

Surprise scorers: Morten Thorsby notched his third goal of the season, Maxime Lopez and Kamil Glik their second. Giuseppe Pezzella opened his tally in that regard after few assists. Ardian Ismajli beat the opposing goalie with a lucky ricochet.

Flops of the round: there was no particular abysmal team performance, but the matchday was strangely filled with own-goal, some goofier than others, by Samir Handanovic, Gianluca Scamacca, Lorenzo Montipò and Fabio Depaoli. Amadou Diawara instead picked up a silly red card.

Clutch goals: one per each race, as Ruslan Malinovskyi punished Juventus with the help of a major deflection, while Alberto Cerri’s capped off Cagliari’s comeback with a close-range header in the stoppage time.

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