The Fiorentina route of Benevento was completed by Dusan Vlahovic’s sensational first-half hat-trick and Valentin Eysseric’s delicate end.
With 26 points, both teams were hovering just above the relegation zone and slipping backward after bad runs of form. With Igor and Sofyan Amrabat not completely fit, Franck Ribery returned from suspension to start for the Viola. Bryan Dabo has been barred from playing against his former side, joining injured teammates Iago Falque, Fabio Depaoli, and Gaetano Letizia in the stands.
Ribery sprinted forward, spread the ball down the left for Valentin Eysseric, who pulled back for Dusan Vlahovic to score after just eight minutes.
Soon after, Lucas Martinez Quarta came close to adding a second but fired over from six yards after handling a left-wing cross.
At the Stadio Vigorito, it was all Viola, and the second goal came from a corner. It was taken short for Eysseric’s cross, and Lorenzo Montip saved a Martin Caceres header with a great reaction save, but he couldn’t stop Vlahovic’s follow-up from six yards.
Following a German Pezzella mistake, Adolfo Gaich attempted a back-heel into the net, forcing Bartlomiej Dragowski to save.
Vlahovic, on the other hand, ended his hat-trick spectacularly. With his back to goal, he chested down a long Dragowski pass, twisted, charged at defenders, and then curved a beauty into the far top corner from a good 25 meters out.
Since Kurt Hamrin in February 1964, the 21-year-old Serbian was the first Fiorentina player to score a first-half hat-trick in Serie A.
Fiorentina was punished for sitting back in their half when Roberto Insigne came on for the second half and instantly fired just wide. Artur Ionita managed to soar above the crowd after a sequence of turns.
Fiorentina was punished for sitting back in their half when Roberto Insigne came on for the second half and instantly fired just wide. Artur Ionita managed to soar over the crowd for a towering header to put Benevento back into the game after a series of corners.
Perparim Hetemaj diverted a free header over the bar, and Gaich was inches away from tapping in Insigne’s cross across the six-yard box.
Gianluca Caprari slalomed past defenders, forcing Dragowski to palm the ball over the bar. On the ensuing corner, there were penalty appeals, but Martin Caceres had his arm close to his hip when it was kicked at him from point-blank range.
However, they were caught on the counter just as Benevento was pouring forward. When Pasquale Schiattarella was trapped in possession, Ribery found Eysseric, who dunked it over the onrushing goalkeeper like a cucumber.