Milan: Chievo Verona coach Eugenio Corini had a dream debut by guiding the Serie A team to a 2-1 win against high-flying Sampdoria on Saturday. A horrendous mistake by Sampdoria goalkeeper Sergio Romero gifted David Di Michele a late winner. Cyril Thereau put Chievo ahead in first-half stoppage time, but Enzo Maresca leveled just after the hour mark with a stunning free kick.
It is Chievo's first points since their opening day victory over Bologna. Following five defeats, the club fired Domenico Di Carlo and hired Corini on Tuesday.
Sampdoria have now lost two in a row and are without a win in four matches. The team remains fifth in the standings ahead of the rest of the weekend's fixtures. "We have the motivation, ability and strength to focus on our aims," Corini said. "This win is very important in that it gives the lads back their morale. I think we deserved it because of the game we played, our desire and our effort on the pitch.
"I was very emotional, at the beginning and at the end. Because I felt the weight of the responsibility which has been entrusted to me." Looking for their first Serie A win over Sampdoria since 2005, Chievo made a good start against a Sampdoria side which has seemed sluggish of late.
The hosts should have taken the lead in the 12th minute when Thereau caught the Sampdoria defense napping, but he hit his effort badly and straight at Romero. Marcelo Estigarribia almost gave Sampdoria the lead moments later with a fantastic 30-yard strike that scraped the top of the crossbar.
Chievo went close four minutes from the break, Bostjan Cesar heading just wide of the right hand post. And the home side broke the deadlock shortly afterward with a move started by Thereau on the halfway line. The Frenchman played a one-two with Luca Rigoni before running into the penalty area, drawing Romero and chipping the ball over the Sampdoria goalkeeper.
Chievo should have doubled their lead when Adrian Stoian's cross found Di Michele completely unmarked near the center of the area, but he fired straight at Romero. Sampdoria leveled four minutes later, Maresca hitting an unstoppable free kick into the top left corner from 25 yards.
However, Chievo snatched the winner three minutes from time through Di Michele's speculative, long-range strike which Romero seemed to have safely grasped over his head before letting it slip through his fingers.
In the later game, Palermo drew 1-1 at Genoa. Bosko Jankovic almost scored against his old team early on, but the Genoa midfielder's 25-yard effort flew just millimeters past the left hand post.
Palermo took the lead in the 14th minute when Luigi Giorgi headed in Josip Ilicic's cross for his second goal in as many games. Genoa had several chances to level and Palermo had goalkeeper Samir Ujkani to thank for preserving its lead.
The home side almost equalized in comical circumstances through Ezequiel Munoz's powerful backheader, with Ujkani only just scrambling to prevent the ball from going in to spare his defender's blushes.
Ciro Immobile went close for Genoa after being sent clear by Marco Borriello, but he lifted his effort just over the crossbar. The Genoa striker had another great chance in first-half stoppage time when he drew a great save from Ujkani at point-blank range.
Genoa's pressure finally told in the 52nd minute with Borriello's third goal in four games. Cristobal Jorquera's corner was headed out by Michel Morganella but straight to Jorquera, who crossed for Borriello to head home.