Parma vs Fiorentina, final score: 2-2: Viola peg Parma back

Gabriele Maltinti

Fiorentina left it late to rescue a point against Parma, as both teams played out a 2-2 draw at the Ennio Tardini.

Fiorentina had been staring at a third loss in four league games until Mati Fernandez fired a late free kick to rescue a point for Vincenzo Montella's side. The reverse game in Florence produced the same scoreline back in Week 6, and this fixture at the Tardini has now finished a draw for the fifth consecutive time.

Antonio Cassano and Amauri had put Parma in control after Juan Cuadrado had sent the two teams level at half time. Modibo Diakite saw red early in the second half, while Borja Valero and Gianni Munari were sent off for fighting in stoppage time, leaving just 19 players left on the field at the final whistle.

You have to go back to early November for the last time Parma tasted defeat in Serie A. Their club record breaking run now stretches to 13 games and they remain in contention for a Europa League place. Despite the late heroics, Fiorentina lose vital ground on the Champions League places.

Parma's Marco Cassani, Alessandro Lucarelli, Marco Marchionni and Amauri all faced their former clubs, but Nicola Pozzi was injured and Afriyie Acquah was suspended.

Fiorentina were boosted by the return of Stefan Savic, Gonzalo Rodriguez, Borja Valero and Cuadrado from injury. Giuseppe Rossi missed the chance to face his former employers, while Mario Gomez started from the bench, as he continued his comeback from a knee injury.

Antonio Mirante prevented an unlikely lob from Diakite finding the net inside the opening minute. Cuadrado was a bright spark for the visitors, flashing two efforts wide from promising positions.

On 15 minutes, Neto rushed out to save at Jonathan Biabiany's feet after the Frenchman's exquisite control provided a clear sight at goal.

Midway through the first half, Alessandro Matri was dispossessed while trying to turn in the box. Parma broke on the counter and Neto cut out Marco Parolo's heavy diagonal pass intended for Biabiany.

Biabiany went close on 28 minutes, turning in the box and bending a shot the wrong side of the post with his unfavoured left foot.

Parma hit the front six minutes before the break through Cassano. Amauri cut the ball back from the byline and a fortunate deflection off David Pizarro landed at the feet of Fant'Antonio, who slotted in from six yards. It was Cassano's ninth career goal against Fiorentina, having also previously netted against the Viola during playing spells for Bari, AS Roma, Sampdoria and Inter Milan.

The lead lasted less than two minutes, as Parma were caught napping on the break. Matri's ball across the box was missed by both Valero and Mirante, allowing Cuadrado to sweep home at the far post.

Parma were awarded a penalty six minutes after the restart, when Nenad Tomovic's high leg caught Biabiany. Amauri despatched the spot kick, sending Neto the wrong way.

Fiorentina suffered another blow when they went down to ten men. Diakite was dismissed after picking up a second booking for a second foul on Cassano. Montella brought on Gomez and Josip Ilicic, but had Neto to thank after he pulled off a superb double save to deny Cassani then Amauri.

Fernandez's introduction was the final roll of the dice for Montella and it paid dividends five minutes from time. The substitute curled a 25 yard free kick into the top corner which caught Mirante totally off-guard.

Parma almost provided another twist from one of their own substitutes. Raffaele Palladino got on the end of Parolo's chipped pass, but couldn't direct his header goalwards.

Tensions boiled over in stoppage time. Parma won a free kick and a scuffle broke out resulting in both Valero and Munari being dismissed.

Parma: Miranante; Cassani, Paletta, Lucarelli, Molinaro; Gargano, Marchionni, (Munari 80) Parolo; Biabiany, (Palladino 87) Amauri, Cassano (Schelotto 83)

Fiorentina: Neto; Savic, Diakitè, Rodriguez, Tomovic; Aquilani, (Fernandez 78) Pizarro, Borja Valero; Cuadrado, Matri, (Ilicic 67) Joaquin (Gomez 59)

Goals: Cassano 39 (P) Cuadrado 41 (F) Amauri pen 51 (P) Fernandez 85 (F)

Sent off: Diakite 54 (F) Valero 90+4 (F) Munari 90+4 (P)

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