Gervinho thriving at Parma with stunning goal vs Cagliari
By DANIELLA MATAR
MILAN (AP) Gervinho received a standing ovation for a stunning goal and another when he was substituted as he helped Parma beat Cagliari 2-0 in Serie A on Saturday.
Gervinho scored the second two minutes after the break. The 31-year-old Ivory Coast international sprinted from deep inside his own half and beat three defenders before firing in off the near post.
"I don't know if it's my best goal, I have scored so many of them," the former Arsenal and Roma player joked. "I'm happy to be here and to have come back to Italy. I'm happy at Parma and I've been welcomed here really well by the fans even though I don't consider myself the star man. We need everyone."
Following his second goal since he returned to Serie A after 2 1/2 years in China, Gervinho was embraced by all of his teammates and given a standing ovation by fans at Stadio Tardini. They gave him another when he was replaced late on.
"I haven't seen a goal like that for years," Parma coach Roberto D'Aversa said. "I'm lucky to have a player like him, who came here with a unique humbleness and with great availability. He is a player who makes the difference. It's right that we put him in the conditions to express himself in the best possible way."
Roberto Inglese scored Parma's opener in the 20th minute after the ball ricocheted off the goalkeeper's chest and Inglese's face.
It was Parma's second straight win after its surprise victory at Inter Milan last week, as it settles back into life in the topflight following a fairytale rise through the divisions, three years after going bankrupt.
Inter left it late midweek to snatch victory against Tottenham in the Champions League and it left it even later to beat Sampdoria 1-0.
Marcelo Brozovic scored in the fourth minute of stoppage time after three goals were ruled out on video review.
Radja Nainggolan thought he fired Inter in front on the stroke of halftime but it was ruled out after the VAR spotted Mauro Icardi was offside in the build-up, blocking goalkeeper Emil Audero's view.
Inter had a second goal ruled out three minutes from time as the ball went out of play before Kwadwo Asamoah's strike.
Moments later, Gregoire Defrel's goal was ruled out for offside, with the Sampdoria forward having the added disappointment of being booked for taking his shirt off in celebration.
Brozovic then controlled Ivan Perisic's cross on his chest before firing it in from a tight angle.
Inter coach Luciano Spalletti was sent off for his celebrations.
"I turned towards the television camera to shout, `Goal!' and the fourth official told me I had done so with too much impetus," Spalletti said. "But it was such an important goal, like a sort of liberation."
Federico Chiesa scored Fiorentina's third goal and immediately went over to embrace his brother Lorenzo, who was on the sidelines as a ball boy. They were watched by father Enrico, himself a former Fiorentina and Italy forward.
Fiorentina won 3-0 over Spal, which had conceded only one goal in its four previous matches.
Marko Pjaca and Nikola Milenkovic scored the first two in the first half.
Spal's night almost went from bad to worse as midfielder Jasmin Kurtic was shown a red card for a tackle on German Pezzella, but the referee amended it to a yellow after consultation with the VAR.
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Updated September 22, 2018