Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Bologna 1-1 Torino

Torino opened the 2017/18 Serie A season with an away draw against Bologna, but saw a late winner disallowed in farcical circumstances due to confusion over the new VAR system.

Salvatore Sirigu, Nicolas N'Koulou and Alex Berenguer all made debuts for Toro, whilst Afriyie Acquah was a surprise starter despite speculation regarding his future.

There was a minute's silence before the match to pay tribute to the victims of the terrorist attack in Barcelona on Thursday. This was particularly poignant for Toro fans, because one of the Italian victims, Luca Russo, was a Torino supporter.

Andrea Belotti had Torino's first chance of the match, but he headed Davide Zappacosta's fine cross wide of the target. However, just before the half hour mark, Toro fell behind when Federico Di Francesco fired a fine left footed volley into the top corner.

Toro were level just six minutes later thanks to a fine individual goal from Adem Ljajic, as the Serbian playmaker nutmegged a defender before hitting a low shot into the corner of the net - although Antonio Mirante will be disappointed not to save it.

Mirante made amends in the second half by making an excellent save to deny Ljajic's long range free kick.

With only minutes remaining, Toro thought they had a winner when Alex Berenguer converted after Andrea Belotti's assist, however the referee had already blew his whistle to check with the Video Assistant Referee whether Belotti had been offside in the build up. It turned out that Belotti was on side as the through ball came off a Bologna player, and therefore Toro had been denied a valid winning goal due to a refereeing error.

However, Toro made a promising start to the new season and will now look for their first victory of the season at home to Sassuolo next Saturday.

Forza Toro and RIP Luca

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