Parma have had their lead at the top of Serie B cut to two points after their surprising defeat to Lecco on Matchday 13 and Venezia beat Catanzaro. The Crociati suffered a 3-2 defeat away to the Blucelesti on Sunday evening whereas the Arancioneroverdi won 2-1 on Friday night against the Aquile.
Parma stay top on 29 points, Venezia are second on 27, but Catanzaro have dropped to equal sixth with Como on 21 points.
Prior to Matchday 13 being played, there was a midweek round of catch-up games for Matchday 2. Palermo defeated Brescia 1-0 to stay in the battle for a promotion spot whereas Lecco and Spezia played out a goalless draw, which was of greater benefit to the Lombards than the Ligurians.
Lecco galvanised under Bonazzoli and shock Parma
On paper, this match looked set to be one of the most one-sided games of the season. However, since replacing Luciano Foschi as coach, Emiliano Bonazzoli has been able to earn two wins and two draws in five matches as the Lecco tactician.
Initially, the game was going to script after Blucelesti defender Mats Lemmens fouled Parma striker Ange-Yoan Bonny in the penalty area, and Adrian Benedyczak converted the spot kick after 12 minutes. The Lombard club equalised in the 23rd minute after Andrija Novakovich finished off a short corner routine, then the Emilians went down to 10 men after Hernani received his second yellow card.
Lecco attempted the short corner routine three minutes before the break and Nicolo Buso put the ball into the net to give them the lead. Twelve minutes into the second half, Franco Lepore extended his team’s advantage with a looping header, and Gabriel Charpentier‘s strike in the 70th minute proved to be no more than a consolation.
The Blucelesti are now equal 16th with Ascoli on 12 points and both sides are in the play-out spots. After losing six of their first seven matches, the Lombard side are slowly showing that they can handle the leap into Serie B.
Venezia earn vital win, Catanzaro keep falling down the table
The Serie B action for Matchday 13 started on Friday evening in Venice in a battle between two teams in the hunt for a promotion spot. Venezia were already second before a ball was kicked, and Catanzaro were as high as third after Matchday 10, but they had lost their last two league matches.
The Arancioneroverdi earned a penalty after Mikael Ellertsson was fouled by Aquile goalkeeper Andrea Fulignati, and Joel Pohjanpalo stepped up to score from the spot in the 25th minute. Andrea Ghion equalised for the Calabrian club after 40 minutes with a powerful strike from long range, only for Dennis Johnsen to regain the lead for the Venetians with a solo effort.
Venezia squandered chances to add further gloss to the win, and despite substitute Bjarki Bjarkason receiving a red card in the 89th minute, it came too late for Catanzaro to muster a serious comeback.
This victory has allowed the Arancioneroverdi to catch up to Parma and pose a serious threat for the Ducali in the battle for direct promotion. For Catanzaro, this was their fourth defeat of the season and another loss against a promotion rival. Coach Vincenzo Vivarini needs to make his side more competitive against stronger opposition.
Serie B 2023/24: Matchday 2 catch-up results
|Wed, Nov 8||Lecco 0-0 Spezia|
|Wed, Nov 8||Palermo 1-0 Brescia|
Serie B 2023/24: Matchday 13 results
|Fri, Nov 10||Venezia 2-1 Catanzaro|
|Sat, Nov 11||Ascoli 0-1 Como|
|Sat, Nov 11||Cosenza 2-0 Reggiana|
|Sat, Nov 11||Feralpisalo 3-3 Bari|
|Sat, Nov 11||Sudtirol 1-2 Pisa|
|Sat, Nov 11||Modena 0-2 Sampdoria|
|Sun, Nov 12||Brescia 0-3 Cremonese|
|Sun, Nov 12||Lecco 3-2 Parma|
|Sun, Nov 12||Palermo 0-1 Cittadella|
|Sun, Nov 12||Spezia 2-2 Ternana|
Serie B 2023/24: Table after Matchday 13