Verona beats Bologna to leave it on brink of Serie A safety

VERONA, Italy -- — Hellas Verona improved its chances of escaping Serie A’s bottom three after beating Bologna 2-1 on Friday thanks to two goals from Simone Verdi.

A first penalty of the season set Verona on the way to the victory that moved it level on points with 17th-placed Spezia, which visits bottom club Sampdoria on Saturday.

Verona remained below Spezia because it has the worse head-to-head record, which is the first tiebreaker in Serie A.

VAR backed Verona in first-half stoppage time with the award of a penalty after Bologna goalkeeper Łukasz Skorupski clattered into Adolfo Gaich when coming for a corner. Verdi rolled the spot kick into the bottom left corner.

The tally was doubled in the 62nd minute. Bologna failed to clear a cross properly and Davide Faraoni put it back into the box for Verdi to head across into the bottom right corner.

Nicolás Domínguez lifted the ball over Verona goalkeeper Lorenzo Montipò in stoppage time to set up a nervy finale.