Tuesday, 28 May 2019

Torino 3-1 Lazio

Torino ended the season in style with a 3-1 victory over Lazio on Sunday afternoon in Emiliano Moretti's final game before retirement.

Despite it being his last professional game, Emiliano Moretti started the game on the bench, with Bremer given a rare start.

The first half was one of few chances, but five minutes into the second half, the Granata took the lead when Ola Aina's long throw was volleyed home by Iago Falque.

Toro doubled their lead just two minutes later as good footwork from Soualiho Meïté put Sasa Lukic through on goal, and the Serbian slotted the ball past the on rushing Silvio Proto.

Lazio reduced the deficit when former Toro striker Ciro Immobile finished well despite being under pressure from Nicolas Nkoulou.

However, Toro made sure of the points with ten minutes remaining when Lorenzo De Silvestri was on hand to score after Proto saved Simone Zaza's shot.

Emiliano Moretti came on for the final five minutes and received the captain's armband from Andrea Belotti as he ended his career as a professional footballer on the winning side.

Forza Toro

Sunday, 26 May 2019

Torino v Lazio Preview

Torino host Lazio in the final game of the 2018/19 Serie A season, as Emiliano Moretti plays the final  game of his career.

The experienced defender announced his retirement during the week, and highlighted his class by asking coach Walter Mazzarri not to be involved in case it overshadowed the match itself.

The home side’s Europa League aspirations were dented when Lazio won the Coppa Italia, but the Granata will finish the season in 7th if they avoid defeat.

Prediction
Torino 1-1 Lazio

Wednesday, 22 May 2019

Empoli 4-1 Torino

Torino's European dreams capitulated on a day to forget in Tuscany as they lost 4-1 to Empoli on Sunday afternoon.

Tomas Rincon returned from suspension, whilst Ola Aina replaced the injured Cristian Ansaldi at left wing back.

The Granata made a slow start, and the home side, fighting desperately against relegation were given a gift after just before the half hour mark.

Ola Aina carelessly gave the ball away on the edge of his own area, and former Toro midfielder Afriyie Acquah's cross-cum-shot found the bottom corner.

Torino improved after going behind, and Andrea Belotti twice came close to finding an equaliser. The Italian international was first denied by Bartlomiej Dragowski, and he then had a header miraculously cleared off the line by Hamed Traore.

Toro got a deserved equaliser ten minutes into the second half, as substitute Iago Falque curled home from the edge of the area. However, Empoli took the lead once again, as another former Toro player Matteo Brighi tapped home just moments after coming onto the pitch.

With the Granata pressing for an equaliser, they were hit on the counter attack, and wing back Giovanni Di Lorenzo fired home after some clever footwork to evade Armando Izzo. Francesco Caputo added a fourth goal in the dying seconds against a tired Toro defence who saw their slim chances of European qualification well and truly extinguished.

Forza Toro

Sunday, 19 May 2019

Empoli v Torino Preview

Torino face Empoli on Sunday afternoon knowing that even maximum points in their final two games may not be enough for European qualification.

Lazio's victory in the Coppa Italia final means that in order to qualify for Europe, Toro will need to finish in 6th place - thus needing one of Atalanta, AC Milan or Roma to slip up.

Cristian Ansaldi picked up an injury in the victory against Sassuolo so misses out and should be replaced by Ola Aina, whilst Tomas Rincon has returned from suspension.

Empoli are currently fighting to stay in the league, and despite winning their last two games, still occupy the third and final relegation spot.

Prediction
Empoli 1-2 Torino

Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Torino 3-2 Sassuolo

Torino scored twice in a minute as they came from behind to beat Sassuolo and claim a vital three points on Sunday afternoon.

Emiliano Moretti returned from suspension and replaced Bremer in defence, whilst Daniele Baselli replaced the suspended Tomas Rincon in midfield.

Torino had an early chance to open the scoring when VAR harshly punished Sassuolo captain Francesco Magnanelli for a handball in the area. However, Toro captain Andrea Belotti blazed the spot kick high over the bar.

Ten minutes later, the away side then took the lead against the run of play thanks to Mehdi Bourabia's low drive from distance. However, the Moroccan midfielder was then dismissed as he received a second yellow card for removing his shirt in celebration.

Despite now being against ten men, it was the Granata who needed the half time interval to regroup from the psychological blow of missing the penalty and then conceding. Toro started the second half
brightly, and Andrea Consigli made a great save to deny Andrea Belotti's overhead kick.

Toro were level soon afterwards, as Lorenzo De Silvestri crossed for Belotti to make amends and score from close range.

However, with twenty minutes remaining, ten man Sassuolo surprisingly took the lead thanks to Pol Lirola's clever back heel following good work from Jeremie Boga.

With ten minutes remaining, Toro equalised when substitute Simone Zaza broke the offside and finished well. Incredibly, just a minute later, Toro took the lead as another De Silvestri cross was met by Andrea Belotti, whose bicycle kick flew past Consigli.

Toro were able to hold on and clinch all three points to maintain their challenge for European qualification.

Saturday, 11 May 2019

Torino v Sassuolo Preview

Torino will continue their quest for European qualification when they face Sassuolo on Sunday afternoon.

Toro will be without the suspended Tomas Rincon, however Iago Falque is fit again and included in the squad.

The away side are safely in mid-table and have been in good form as of late, and are unbeaten in their last six games.

Prediction
Torino 2-1 Sassuolo

Wednesday, 8 May 2019

Juventus 1-1 Torino

Torino came close to securing their first away win in a Turin derby since 1995, but were cruelly denied late on.

Bremer made his first start for the club as he replaced the suspended Emiliano Moretti in defence, whilst Sasa Lukic was preferred to Daniele Baselli in midfield.

Toro made a bright start, and Wojciech Szczęsny was forced to make an early save to deny Andrea Belotti. The Granata got their reward for their positive play, and took the lead after seventeen minutes when Sasa Lukic capitalised on a Miralem Pjanic error and curled the ball into the top corner.

The home side reacted well, and Salvatore Sirigu made a good save to deny Blaise Matuidi, whilst Cristiano Ronaldo narrowly fired a shot wide of the post.

In the second half, substitute Ola Aina almost made the perfect entrance, as he almost doubled Toro's lead within seconds of coming on, but the Nigerian international's shot went over the bar.

With just six minutes remaining, Toro finally succumbed to the Juventus pressure as Leonardo Spinazzola's cross was expertly headed home by Ronaldo.

The Granata had to settle for a point, which they certainly would have taken pre-match, but they will be left wondering what could have been.

Forza Toro