Udinese Vs. Napoli, 2012 Serie A: Edinson Cavani Engineers Comeback In Draw

Napoli were poor in the first 55 minutes in Friuli, and allowed Udinese to jump out to a very well deserved 2-0 lead. They defended poorly and didn't have too many ideas going forward, but things changed in the final half hour. Diego Fabbrini was shown a questionable second yellow card in the 60th minute, and with Udinese down to 10 men, the Azzurri pounced. Edinson Cavani scored twice in the final minutes, snatching a point for Napoli in a 2-2 draw.

Giampiero Pinzi scored the opener 27 minutes in, and the goal showed off the problem that was the absence of Christian Maggio. Andrea Dossena was caught out on Udinese's right, as Antonio Di Natale drifted wide, then put a great ball across the box. Morgan De Sanctis couldn't get a hand to the low cross and Pinzi got forward with an intelligent run from deep, then applied the finish.

Di Natale scored his team's second in the 52nd minute, with Dossena falling asleep and allowing Di Natale to lose him, then apply the finish. It appeared at that time like Udinese were cruising to an easy win.

Then, the sending off happened and changed the game considerably. Napoli had a chance to get back into the game in the 73rd minute when Maurizio Domizzi was called for a handball in the box, but Cavani took a terrible penalty that was easily saved by Samir Handanovic. Udinese coach Francesco Guidolin was furious with the decision and was sent off for dissent.

Cavani would eventually atone for his error. He scored a fantastic unsaveable free kick in the 81st minute, then scored an equalizer from close range in the 85th minute, finishing off a pass from Blerim Dzemalli. Napoli continued to push forward in search of a winner, but Handanovic found skills inside of himself that he didn't appear to possess when he conceded the first two goals, making two excellent saves between the equalizer and the end of the game to deny Napoli all three points.

This draw keeps Lazio in third place, and the race for third between them and the two teams that played in Udine on Sunday is sure to be close until the final day.

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