Serie B: Parma stumble in promotion push but nobody takes advantage as Venezia and Cremonese slip

Serie B Matchday 31 was a dramatic round filled with goals and surprise results. Catanzaro defeated leaders Parma and Pisa came back twice to win against Palermo.

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There was plenty of action and drama on Serie B Matchday 31 as leaders Parma suffered a defeat at home to Catanzaro while Como jumped into second after Venezia and Cremonese lost their respective fixtures.

The Gialloblu surprisingly lost 2-0 to the Giallorossi, but they still have a seven-point lead over second place. Como were able to take second spot thanks to their 2-0 win at home to Sudtirol whereas Venezia lost 3-2 to Reggiana and Cremonese were defeated 1-0 by lowly Feralpisalo.

Sampdoria striker Manuel De Luca with the match ball after scoring a hat-trick. (Photo: U.C. Sampdoria Facebook)

Meanwhile, the battle for the remaining Serie B playoff spots is heating up. Sampdoria earned an emphatic 4-1 victory against Ternana thanks to a hat-trick from Manuel De Luca, but Palermo’s horrid form continues, losing 4-3 to Pisa in a classic encounter. The Tuscans are level on points with Reggiana and both clubs are only two points behind Brescia in eighth.

Catanzaro emerge victorious in Parma, Venezia crumble against Reggiana

Parma had an eight-point lead over Venezia after Matchday 30, and after thrashing Catanzaro 5-0 earlier in the season, the Crociati had more reason to be confident going into this match. Despite having 58% of the possession and leading the shot count 27 to seven, the Gialloblu conceded goals in the first half from Tommaso Biasci and Matias Antonini.

Parma midfielder Simon Sohm in action against Catanzaro. (@ParmaCalcio_en)

Catanzaro learnt the lessons from earlier in the season and held on for the win. Currently fifth on 52 points, the Calabrians have a mathematical chance of securing direct promotion, whereas Venezia slipped from second place after squandering a 2-0 lead against Reggiana. The Arancioneroverdi went in front thanks to goals from Gianluca Busio and Joel Pohjanpalo, but Manolo Portanova pulled a goal back just before the break.

Things got worse for the Venetians in the second half when Giorgio Altare scored an own goal, then Edoardo Pieragnolo scored the winner for the Granata in the 65th minute. The victory gives Alessandro Nesta’s team some chance to break into the playoff spots, whereas defeat for Venezia allowed Como to capitalise.

Pisa a potential playoff contender after Palermo victory

Pisa players celebrate with their fans after their victory against Palermo. (@PisaSC)

Reggiana are equal ninth with Pisa on 40 points and both teams will be looking to break into the playoffs after their wins on the weekend. The Nerazzurri had a tough start against Palermo, but they came back twice to defeat the Rosanero.

The Sicilians were in control in the first half. Although Federico Di Francesco had a goal disallowed after a VAR review, Palermo still went into the break with a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Matteo Brunori and Kristoffer Lund.

It took two goals in a four-minute spell early in the second half from Marco D’Alessandro and Nicholas Bonfanti to draw Pisa level, and things started to look better when Rosanero midfielder Claudio Gomes received his second yellow card for the game. Brunori made 3-2 to the Sicilians in the 76th minute, but the Pisans came back and won when Matteo Tramoni scored a late brace.

Palermo are sixth with 49 points, but they have lost four out of their last five. They need to turn their form around fast or risk dropping out later in the season. Sampdoria and Pisa are hitting form at the right time while Brescia and Reggiana are steadily collecting points as well.

Serie B 2023/24: Matchday 31 results

DateSerie B Fixtures/Results
Mon, Apr 1Modena 1-1 Bari
Mon, Apr 1Parma 0-2 Catanzaro
Mon, Apr 1Como 2-0 Sudtirol
Mon, Apr 1Spezia 2-1 Ascoli
Mon, Apr 1Pisa 4-3 Palermo
Mon, Apr 1Lecco 1-1 Cittadella
Mon, Apr 1Cosenza 1-2 Brescia
Mon, Apr 1Venezia 2-3 Reggiana
Mon, Apr 1Cremonese 0-1 Feralpisalo
Mon, Apr 1Sampdoria 4-1 Ternana

Serie B 2023/24: Table after Matchday 31

PosClubMPPts
1Parma3165
2Como3158
3Venezia3157
4Cremonese3156
5Catanzaro3152
6Palermo3149
7Sampdoria3143
8Brescia3142
9Pisa3140
10Reggiana3140
11Cittadella3139
12Sudtirol3138
13Modena3138
14Bari3135
15Cosenza3134
16Spezia3134
17Ternana3132
18Ascoli3131
19Feralpisalo3130
20Lecco3122

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