Serie A spotlight: Why everyone should be in love with Sassuolo

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If you ask a neutral football fan which Serie A side they should be watching, chances are the answer will be Atalanta.

And with good reason. Over the past three seasons, the boys from Bergamo have been breathtaking to watch, taking Italy and Europe by storm with their fearless attacking football.

But there is now another team in their own division who are rivalling Gian Piero Gasperini’s men for the title of football’s most fun team.

The side who are out to take that crown are Roberto De Zerbi’s slick Sassuolo outfit, who have continued their fine form into this season and are a joy to watch.

They put their unbeaten record on the line over the weekend when travelling to take on a Napoli side who were also yet to taste defeat in Serie A this season (on the field at least).

But their task became extremely difficult in having top scorer Ciccio Caputo along with fellow attackers Domenico Berardi and Filip Djuričić (who together contributed to over two thirds of their goals) all ruled out.

On top of that, the Neroverdi faced a Napoli side who have been impressive in attack themselves and who really should have capitalised on some early Sassuolo mistakes to take the lead.

The visitors held firm though, defensive resilience not being something that they’re particularly renowned for, and then struck after the break with a Manuel Locatelli penalty and Maxime Lopez goal after deftly weaving his way around blue jerseys in the box.


It was the first clean sheet of the season for Sassuolo, who still play their home games at the Mapei Stadium in Reggio Emilia due to the ground in their hometown not being fit for purpose, who are shining without any real star power.

There are recognisable names in the squad. Incredibly, Berardi is still at the club, having seemed destined for great things during his breakout season when the Neroverdi were first promoted, memorably scoring four times in a game against Milan.

While his progress has tailed off a little, he’s still a very talented and dangerous player who, surprisingly, only turned 26 recently.

Andrea Consigli remains a reliable presence between the posts and ahead of him, Gian Marco Ferrari and Vlad Chiriches are performing very well, while in the engine room, Locatelli has blossomed into a true leader and one of the best midfielders in the league.


Jeremie Boga’s fast feet make him a must-watch and their main man in attack, Caputo has went on an incredible journey from almost quitting football due to his disillusionment all the way to the Italian national team. And all while managing to brew his own beer on the side.

The point is that this is a strong group of players who aren’t quite household names but who have been made greater than the sum of their parts by a coach whose commitment to attacking football has made them must-see viewing.

Between a 1-1 draw in their opener and their victory over Napoli, they enjoyed two 4-1 wins, a 4-3 thriller and dramatic 3-3 comeback.


That’s how De Zerbi wants it. As a talented No. 10 during his playing days, he has often preached about the importance for his side to be on the ball because that’s when they’ll have the most fun.

The main problem he’s had this season, which he discussed before the game, is getting the team to believe they are as good as he and others do.

We had important absences but we have a strong, young squad who perhaps still don’t have the conviction in their own skills. This is a team of high quality and now we know we can win anywhere.

ROBERTO DE ZERBI TO RADIO RAI

After their most recent result and the circumstances it was achieved in, confidence shouldn’t be a problem anymore.

And elsewhere …

Milan won. again. Zlatan Ibrahimović scored. Again. Oh and he also provided an assist too. They’re looking like the real deal.
Cristiano Ronaldo is back! And it didn’t take him long to get back up to speed – scoring twice as Juventus saw off Spezia comfortably.
Gervinho rolled back the years at San Siro but Parma’s late collapse allowed Inter to salvage a point thanks to Ivan Perišić’s late header.
😱 Goal of the Weekend


Jakub Jankto’s blistering drive in the derby was good but the pass and then technique for Gervinho’s volleyed opener was very special.

🥇 Player of the Weekend


Two superb finishes from Bologna’s young striker fired them to a vital victory against Cagliari, displaying how dangerous he is no matter where he picks the ball up.


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