Pazzini hits winning penalty in shoot-outSampdoria reached the quarter-finals of the Coppa Italia after defeating Udinese 5-4 on penalties at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris on Wednesday evening.
Giampaolo Pazzini turned out to be Samp's saviour in this round of 16 tie as he scored from the spot in extra-time to make it 2-2 and then stroked home the winning penalty in the shoot-out.
Manchester United's Federico Macheda scored his first goal for the hosts in the first half but it was cancelled out by Mauricio Isla in the 90th minute.
German Denis then gave Udinese an early lead in extra-time and despite the hosts going down to 10 men after Daniele Dessena was sent off, Pazzini successfully converted his spot-kick to take a topsy-turvy match into penalties.
Sampdoria were by far the better side in the opening quarter of an hour as they created two good chances. The first one was crafted as early as the fifth minute when Daniele Mannini whipped in a cross for Pazzini but the Italian striker couldn't divert his header into the net.
Ten minutes later the hosts once again conjured up a chance when Mannini put in a low cross from the right but neither Pazzini nor Macheda could reach it.
Udinese were firmly on the backfoot by now and were struggling to launch an attack of their own. The Bianconeri were put under danger again midway through the first half when once more Mannini delivered a wonderful cross from the right; but Pazzini's volley went over the Sampdoria crossbar.
Moments later Macheda tried his luck with a shot from outside the Udinese penalty box and soon after the 19-year-old Italian swooped in on a Stefano Guberti cross and forced goalkeeper Emanuele Belardi into making a save.
Macheda eventually found the net on 32 minutes as, when released by Guberti, he took a shot that deceived Belardi at the near post and slipped under the crossbar meaning that Samp went 1-0 up at the break.
Udinese coach Francesco Guidolin brought on Alexis Sanchez for Antonio Di Natale in order to shake things up a bit in the attacking department and 10 minutes later the 22-year-old Chile international created a chance for Almen Abdi. Minutes later, though, Pazzini had a shot go over the bar for Samp.
The visitors were starting to get into the game and were making all the positive moves but before long the Blucerchiati had re-imposed themselves on proceedings, Reto Ziegler going for goal with a long-range free-kick and then Pazzini and Mannini combining well in front of goal.
Samp continued to look for the second strike as Angelo Palombo went close and so did Pazzini in the closing stages, but in the 90th minute Isla equalised for Udinese to take the game into extra-time.
Two minutes into extra-time and Udinese went ahead for the first time in the game through Denis as the Argentine turned in a corner. Mannini and Guberti then forced Belardi into making saves before Sampdoria went down to 10 men as midfielder Dessena got himself sent off.
However, Pazzini successfully converted a 109th minute penalty, won by Andrea Poli, to make it 2-2 and take the match into penalties, where Pazzini struck the winner that takes Sampdoria through to the last-eight.