The bubble has well and truly burst. Any person who watched a lot of Serie B last season will tell you that Crotone were the real feel good story of the campaign. Yet there was another who defied expectations to come within a whisker of Serie A promotion.
In the end they would be denied this historic promotion by Massimo Oddo’s Pescara, but it remained a historic season for Serse Cosmi and his Trapani men. The reason it became such is due to a phenomenal second half to the season which saw the Granata rise from basically the middle of the pack to finish in third. All this after at one stage losing five matches in a row earlier on in the year.
Skipping forward a few short months and it looks as if Trapani will need another powerful second half of the season because as of now things have turned very sour in the western Sicilian city. With eight matches of the 2016/17 having been played the Granata sit bottom on only five points and remain the only one of the 22 teams in the league without a win.
While some sort of a drop off in performances may have been expected the sheer collapse in Trapani’s results over the first eight weeks of the season have been absolutely staggering. Needless to say that this has had the effect of heaping mass amount of pressure on Serse Cosmi. A man who could do no wrong at the end of last year and a man who even became a media darling after pictures of him balling his eyes out on the bench after the play-off final defeat.
Earlier this week Cosmi called his own future at the club into doubt when there were murmurings that he might step down after his car was burnt out allegedly by some disgruntled followers. However, it must be stated that the local fire department have said that the fire started as a result of a short circuit with the batteries. They have though still not fully ruled out foul play.
As for Cosmi his has been a managerial career equivalent of the light that shines twice as bright last half as long. In his 26 years on various benches he has often been called in to quench the fire i.e. save a club from the possibility of relegation or simply to steer the club through a difficult period. This is seen in the fact that the longest he has ever spent at a club is 5 years, at Pontevecchio and Arezzo both incidentally at the very start of his career.
It seems to be that once Cosmi is given time to stamp his own mark on a team things start to go downhill. His initial burst of energy and enthusiasm just look to wilt and the bunker mentality he installs initially on arriving at a club cannot be expanded on into a more blitzkrieg style attack. Currently the loveable Perugian native sits on 70 matches managed for the Granata, only three other times in his previous 11 other jobs in management has he gone on to manage more. With all three of them being his first three jobs.
Elsewhere around the league this week the only two sides in the division who had remained unbeaten are no more. Benevento’s absolutely ludicrously good start to the season was given a bit of a reality check when they went down 2-1 away to Salernitana. While Spezia, that side who never look to be doing anything but always seem to find themselves right up in the play-off mix were beaten at home by Carpi. Kevin Lasagna with the goal for the visitors. (who I could make a cheap joke over but I am a professional journalist, I say while sniggering away to myself)
The pre-season favourites continue to flatter to deceive as both Bari and Hellas Verona could only draw at the weekend. Made all the more damming by the fact that they were both playing at home. Also worth noting Giampaolo Pazzini got his eight of the season for Verona in their 2-2 draw with Brescia, five of which have so far come from the penalty spot. Suggesting that defenders should try staying on their feet when a man in Blue and Yellow advances ominously towards you.
Novara picked up a much needed win at home to Ascoli, thanks to a Paolo Farago effort just past the hour. It has been a very sluggish start to the season for the Biancoazzurri and fans will be hoping that this is the win that will sparked them into life.
Speaking of coming to life Perugia look to be settling into life under new man Cristian Brocchi. A fine 3-0 win at the Renato Curi against Avellino has the Grifone up into seventh. And while there is plenty of work to do at least things are heading in the right direction.
Pierpaolo Bisoli’s first match in charge of Vicenza ended in a 0-0 draw against Cesena. The Lane have now failed to score in six of their opening eight matches. Making them about as much fun to watch as paint drying.
We are now eight matches into the season and only three teams have managed to win more than three of those matches showcasing the fierce competitive nature of this division.
View Table HERE.
Week 8 Results:
Novara 1-0 Ascoli, Cittadella 2-3 Frosinone, Hellas Verona 2-2 Brescia, Bari 1-1 Virtus Entella, Latina 2-0 Trapani, Perugia 3-0 Avellino, Pisa 0-1 SPAL, Pro Vercelli 1-0 Ternana, Spezia 0-1 Carpi, Vicenza 0-0 Cesena, Salernitana 2-1 Benevento.