Parma continue to sit comfortably at the top of the Serie B table after the conclusion of Matchday 12 after defeating Sudtirol, but the battle for promotion them is heating up. The Ducali won 2-0 against the club from Bolzano while Modena defeated Catanzaro 2-1 in Calabria to leap up to third.

The Crociati now have 29 points, and Venezia are in second place on 24 after their 1-0 victory against lowly Ternana. Modena are now on 22 points and Catanzaro are now one point behind them in fourth.

Meanwhile, Bari have commenced their ascent up the Serie B table after an abundance of draws, and they have won their last two matches under new coach Pasquale Marino.

Modena emerge as unlikely promotion contender under new coach Bianco

It was a solid return to Serie B for Modena in 2022/23, finishing 10th after they had won the Serie C Girone B in the previous season. However, Canarini coach Attilio Tesser rescinded his contract with one year remaining, and dropped down to coach Triestina in Serie C.

It was decided that Paolo Bianco would replace Tesser despite his lack of experience as a senior coach. After coaching spells with Siracusa and Sicula Leonzio in Serie C, the 46-year-old went on to be an assistant coach at Sassuolo, Shakhtar Donetsk, and Juventus. Despite being a novice in the Cadetti, Bianco has already done a great job with the Emilian club.

Modena travelled to the Calabrian capital on the weekend to face Catanzaro, and despite going 1-0 down in the 19th minute after a goal from Jari Vandeputte, the Canarini were able to overturn the deficit. Jacopo Manconi equalised eight minutes later and substitute Kleis Bozhanaj scored the winner five minutes into injury time with a long-range effort.

It was the Emilians third consecutive victory and they were able to jump above the Calabrians in the Serie B table. Despite experiencing a spell in which they went winless in six matches, Bianco’s team have rediscovered the winning formula and have beat potential rivals in the process.

Bari’s Giuseppe Sibilli celebrates. (Photo: SSC Bari Facebook)

Marino gets Bari back to winning ways

Bari were so close to returning to Serie A, but they were defeated by Cagliari in the 2022/23 Serie B playoffs. The Galletti kept Michele Mignani as coach, but he received his marching orders after drawing seven out of nine matches.

He was replaced by former Catania and Udinese tactician Pasquale Marino, who had not coached for almost two years. Despite his absence, the 61-year-old has immediately turned things around, winning twice and drawing once in his three matches in charge.

The latest result was a 1-0 victory at home to Ascoli, and it took a stunning individual effort from Giuseppe Sibilli to score the winner. With 10 minutes remaining, the attacking midfielder received the ball in his own half, beat three defenders, and fired a shot into the bottom right corner.

This victory suddenly takes Bari to eighth place, and they are back in the play-off spots. Can Marino sustain this winning run and make the Apulian side atone for the last season’s disappointment?

Serie B 2023/24: Matchday 12 results

Sat, Nov 4Bari 1-0 Ascoli
Sat, Nov 4Catanzaro 1-2 Modena
Sat, Nov 4Cittadella 3-2 Brescia
Sat, Nov 4Cosenza 1-1 Feralpisalo
Sat, Nov 4Pisa 1-1 Como
Sat, Nov 4Ternana 0-1 Venezia
Sat, Nov 4Sampdoria 1-0 Palermo
Sun, Nov 5Cremonese 3-0 Spezia
Sun, Nov 5Parma 2-0 Sudtirol
Sun, Nov 5Reggiana 1-1 Lecco

Serie B 2023/24: Table after Matchday 12