Saturday, 19 February 2011

Torino 3-1 Pescara

Torino ended their poor run of form with a 3-1 home victory over Pescara, but had to come from behind to do so.

Before the game started the biggest talking point centred on coach Franco Lerda's decision to leave captain and top goalscorer Rolando Bianchi on the bench, and when Souleymane Diamoutene headed home after 12 minutes, Torino fans feared the worst. However, the home side fought back gallantly, and equalised through Daniele De Vezze's header from Biagio Pagano's fine cross. Torino took the lead minutes into the second half, after Angelo Ogbonna's brilliant long pass found Mirco Antenucci who stabbed home, to score his first goal for the club. Rolando Bianchi came off the bench midway through the second half, and almost predictably, it was he who scored the third goal. The ex Manchester City striker had a simple tap in after a great cross from Dejan Lazarevic, who was a constant threat throughout the whole game.

Bianchi celebrated passionately by the Torino bench, perhaps illustrating that he was not happy with the coach's decision to start him on the bench, though ultimately that decision was vindicated. Torino had to survive a late onslaught from Pescara, when Gianluca Nicco hit the crossbar, and the away team were awarded a penalty following Claudio Rivalta's handball, but Rubinho produced a fine save from Marco Sansovini's penalty, to keep the score at 3-1.

This victory has moved Torino up to 7th position, and are only kept out of the playoff positions by goal difference, and the impressive nature of the performance, combined with the favourable result, should ensure Franco Lerda's position at the club is secure for the time being. It will be interesting to see whether Lerda will continue to keep Bianchi on the substitutes bench in future weeks, or whether he can find a way to fit both Antenucci and Bianchi in the same starting eleven.

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