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On Sunday evening just gone past 5pm and it was confirmed that Sampdoria was relegated to Serie B after losing 2-1 at home to Palermo. It was just twenty years ago they were Serie A champions and only just ten months ago they were playing in the premier European club competition against Werder Bremen in the fourth qualifying round of the Champions League. Unluckily they lost after conceding a ninety-fourth minute goal to Marcus Rosenberg which enabled the game to go into extra time and Claudio Pizarro dented their hopes with a goal in extra time.

I think there is one man to blame for this and it is the stubborn president Riccardo Garrone. He had an intense heated public row with Antonio Cassano after the playmaker said he wouldn’t join the president at a awards dinner in late October. Cassano himself apologised repeatedly and even asked to take a wage cut, but Garrone wouldn’t have any of it and sold him to champions Milan in the winter transfer window for a very small fee. Also Garrone buckled when Inter approached for Giampaolo Pazzini and sold him in late January to Inter Milan for over £10m in exchange for Jonathan Biabiany. Replacing Pazzini with Massimo Maccarone was a bad bit of business because the former Siena and Middlesbrough striker has flopped. Since their two best players were sold Sampdoria have been in free-fall and on Sunday it was the lowest of them all as they were relegated to Serie B.

On Sunday game Sampdoria was at home to Palermo and known anything less than a win resulted in relegation to Serie B.
On the half hour there was a massive call by the linesman after Nicola Pozzi converted from a Stefano Guberti cross. The linesman raised his flag for offside so the goal was chalked off. Pozzi was let’s say distraught as he was on his knees to the linesman. The linesman got it clearly wrong and the goal should have stood. On half time a sucker punch for the home team as Lecce fan Fabrizio Miccoli got the goal when he received the ball and let go an angle drive past Da Costa and celebrated with the WWE John Cena “you can’t see me”

Just two minutes into the second half Sampdoria got a life line and got an equaliser when a corner was played in and it found its way to Jonathan Biabiany who headed home from close range to ease the nerves.

But with five minutes to go Palermo ended Sampdoria stay in Serie A as Palermo hit Doria on the counter attack when Abel Hernandez found Pinilla who finished calmly as Da Costa rushed off his line to stop the attack. Pinilla showed some real class by not celebrating. After the final whistle i felt for Angelo Palombo who was inconsolable and was in floods in tears. He prayed for the Sampdoria fans forgiveness as he went to opposite sides of the grounds behind the goals, the Samp fans were clapping him off.

Genoa was away to Lazio on the first game of the weekend which was played on Saturday evening at a sun kissed Stadio Olimpico. Genoa was in mid-table and was safe from all relegation and Lazio had Champions League ambitions to harbour.

It started off really well for the home side as in the opening seven minutes Lazio opened the scoring after a Mauro Zarate corner was headed home by Giuseppe Biava. Just five minutes later Genoa equalised and it was Rodrigo Palacio who got the goal after Muslera done well to deny Mauro Boselli effort and Rodrigo Palacio was there to fire home from six yards out.

Just seven minutes into the second half Lazio took the lead and it was a fantastic goal Tommaso Rocchi, he latched on to a long ball from Cristian Ledesma and a brilliant first touch which took him in his stride and coolly nutmugged Eduardo in the Genoa goal. It was 3-1 just four minutes later and it was the Brazilian playmaker Hernanes getting the first of his double when he met Ledesma cross to head home.

He added Lazio fourth and his second just ten minutes later, when Zarate crossed in for Hernanes who rifled home from twelve yards. In the dying ambers of the game Genoa grabbed a late consolation and it was a lucky goal as a Domenico Criscito effort on goal deflected off his team Antonio Floro Flores and into the back of the net.

Scot Munroe

A Football fan for around 18 years since the age of 6 years old. My first love is Swindon town now managed by the mad man that is Paolo Di Canio. I have been a fan of Italian football for around 10-15 years now since the Channel four days back in the Uk with James Richardson. I am a Roma fan as well and i have been following the club since 2003 with the attack minded football with Totti and Cassano.

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3 Responses so far.

  1. Sampdoria (Chicago chapter) says:

    Thank you very much for writing these articles this season. I’ve enjoyed them thoroughly. Your analysis is correct, the blame can be placed squarely on the shoulders of the egomaniacal oil tycoon owner. But it was even worse than your article recognizes. Cassano did beg forgiveness, he did offer a wage cut, and he said “my heart always belongs to Sampdoria,” moments after Milan clinched the Scudetto. Yes, it was bad enough running a loyal player out of the Marassi because he bruised Garrone’s pride. Garrone pulled a Lippi, and put his own ego ahead of the fans and the team - a capital offense in team administration. But Garrone did NOT sell Cassano for a small fee. Because of the buy-on clause from Real Madrid, Garrone actually paid €2.5 million out of Samp’s coffers to unload Cassano. GARRONE BLEW €2.5 MILLION in the process of exiling the greatest Italian playmaker of this generation. Therefore, Garrone’s idiocy and egotism are more than merely unbelievable, they are boundless. He is not a leader to the club, he is toxic waste to it. Samp became diseased by him, and have paid the price for his judgement that was beyond terrible. Garrone needs to sell the team immediately, to an ownership group that will pit the club and its supporters first.

    • Walker says:

      hope you’ve listened to this week’s podcast, the 2.5 million to Real Madrid was mentioned…

  2. Ted says:

    No more Genoa Derby, how sad….
    Good luck Samp, you’ll need it in B.

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