Serie B: Parma back on top after thrilling draw against Palermo, Venezia slip away to Cremonese

Parma stand alone at the top of Serie B after Matchday 16 thanks to their thrilling comeback draw against Palermo, while Venezia were defeated by another promotion rival in Cremonese.

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Parma celebrate securing a dramatic point against Palermo. (@1913parmacalcio)

Parma are outright leaders in Serie B again at the end of Matchday 16 after a dramatic draw against Palermo whereas Venezia lost on the road against an in-form Cremonese. The Gialloblu came back from 3-1 down in stoppage time to draw 3-3 against the Rosanero on Sunday, capitalising on the Arancioneroverdi’s 1-0 defeat away to the Grigiorossi the day before.

The Emilian club now have 34 points, with the Venetians a point behind and Como on 31 in third. Cremonese are fifth on 29 points, and the Sicilians are eighth on 25, having won just once in their last eight matches.

Venezia vs Cremonese was a rather cagey affair, but Parma vs Palermo was totally the opposite, with goals in each half, quality strikes, and a dramatic finish to top it off.

Parma forward Valentin Mihaila gets into a shooting position. (@1913parmacalcio)

Brunori magic not enough to stop Parma

Parma had shown some signs of slowing down after a shock 3-2 defeat to Lecco on Matchday 13, and they needed an own goal from Joao Moutinho to get a victory against Spezia in the previous weekend of Serie B action. On Sunday afternoon, they had a chance to reclaim top spot for themselves after Venezia‘s loss the day before.

Palermo opened the scoring after just three minutes thanks to a spectacular lob from Matteo Brunori, and he doubled the lead for the Rosanero in the 18th minute with a bending shot.

Nahuel Estevez pulled one back six minutes into the second half for Parma with a deflected strike just inside the box, but it seemed that a Jacopo Segre goal with five minutes remaining was enough to give the Sicilians a much-needed victory.

Romanian forward Valentin Mihaila pulled it back to 3-2 in injury time after the Rosanero failed to clear a free-kick properly and he fired a shot from just outside of the box. The Crociati finally got an equaliser five minutes into stoppage time when Adrian Bernabe sent a long pass into the penalty area and Gabriel Charpentier headed the ball into the far bottom corner.

Cremonese players celebrate a victory at home. (@USCremonese)

Cremonese improve under Stroppa

Cremonese struggled in the early rounds of the 2023/24 Serie B campaign, producing the type of performances and results that got them relegated from Serie A last season. After five rounds, the Grigiorossi sacked Davide Ballardini as coach and replaced him with Giovanni Stroppa.

Stroppa has taken the Lombard club as high as third in recent weeks, but a scoreless draw against Pisa on Matchday 15 allowed Como and Catanzaro to leap above them. However, facing Venezia was a true test of their promotion credentials and they were able to contain the attacking threat of the Arancioneroverdi.

Despite losing Valentin Antov to a red card after 52 minutes, Cremonese were able to score the only goal of the game nine minutes from time. A corner from the left found its way to Franco Vazquez at the back post. Then, he provided a powerful cross into the middle and Luca Ravanelli diverted the ball into the net from point-blank range.

The victory means that the Grigiorossi stay fifth, but with five victories in their last six games, they remain in the Serie B playoff spots and they are just four points off automatic promotion.

Serie B 2023/24: Matchday 16 results

DateSerie B Fixtures/Results
Sat, Dec 9Ascoli 1-2 Spezia
Sat, Dec 9Bari 2-1 Sudtirol
Sat, Dec 9Cittadella 2-0 Cosenza
Sat, Dec 9Cremonese 1-0 Venezia
Sat, Dec 9Sampdoria 2-0 Lecco
Sat, Dec 9Ternana 2-1 Feralpisalo
Sat, Dec 9Catanzaro 2-0 Pisa
Sun, Dec 10Como 2-1 Modena
Sun, Dec 10Parma 3-3 Palermo
Sun, Dec 10Reggiana 1-1 Brescia

Serie B 2023/24: Table after Matchday 16

PosClubMPPts
1Parma1634
2Venezia1633
3Como1631
4Catanzaro1630
5Cremonese1629
6Cittadella1628
7Modena1626
8Palermo1625
9Bari1621
10Sampdoria1619
11Cosenza1619
12Brescia1619
13Pisa1618
14Sudtirol1617
15Reggiana1617
16Lecco1616
17Ternana1614
18Ascoli1613
19Spezia1613
20FeralpiSalo167
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