Sampdoria maintains unbeaten home record

Sampdoria's Antonio Cassano kicks the ball during a Serie A soccer match between Sampdoria and Empoli. (Simona Arveda/ANSA via AP)

GENOA, Italy — Sampdoria was held to a 1-1 draw by Empoli in Serie A on Thursday but maintained its unbeaten home record.

Sampdoria knew that a victory in the last match of the midweek round of fixtures would lift it to seventh in the table, but Empoli had won two of its past three matches and was looking to move further away from the relegation zone.

Empoli broke the deadlock on the hour mark when Manuel Pucciarelli received the ball in the area from Riccardo Saponara, turned inside and curled an impressive finish into the top left corner.

However, Empoli’s lead lasted seven minutes before Eder — who had two efforts ruled out for offside inside the opening 12 minutes — got the equalizer.

Fernando stole the ball off substitute Assane Diousse and raced forward before slipping it through to Eder, who drove the ball into the bottom left corner.

Diousse’s misery was complete when he was sent off with two minutes remaining following a second booking.

Empoli moved level with Palermo, Genoa and Udinese, with all four clubs five points off the relegation zone

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