Di Natale denies Palermo
Last Updated: 15/12/12 7:35pm
Antonio Di Natale: Late leveller
Antonio Di Natale was Udinese's saviour once again with his last-gasp goal earning the Friulians a 1-1 draw at home to Palermo.
Josip Ilicic put the visitors in front in the 33rd minute with Udinese goalkeeper Zeljko Brkic getting caught out by a divot on a far from regular pitch after recent snow.
Brkic then kept Udinese in the game before Di Natale struck to grab a point for the home side, who extend their unbeaten run to three games.
Fabrizio Miccoli provided the first threat of the match in the fifth minute when he twisted and turned inside the penalty area but pulled his shot just wide of the left-hand upright.
Two minutes later, Robert Pereyra squandered the chance to give the home side the lead when his first touch let him down with only Samir Ujkani to beat.
He was still able to nudge the ball past the Palermo goalkeeper, but he only found the side-netting from a tight angle.
Palermo took the lead in the 33rd minute when Ilicic's shot from outside the penalty area took a wicked bounce off a divot just in front of Brkic and looped over him.
Ilicic then showed a more negative side of his game by taking a dive inside the penalty area after touching the ball past Udinese defender Danilo, earning a yellow card for his attempt to deceive the referee.
A minute later, Dusan Basta blazed a 20-yard effort wide of the far post as Udinese showed a rare sign of life.
Maurizio Domizzi's headed goal was rightly ruled out for offside in the 50th minute after Giovanni Pasquale's shot was pushed onto the post by Ujkani.
Giampiero Pinzi then had a shot saved as the game opened up with chances at both ends.
The best chances arrived at the goal defended by Brkic with Franco Brienza shooting just over the crossbar in the 69th minute.
Brkic made a string of fine saves to make up for any blame he could have taken in the goal before Udinese found an unexpected equaliser in the 89th minute.
Ujkani lost his grasp of the ball when he clashed with the legs of his own defender Ezequiel Munoz - and Di Natale was on hand to poach his 10th goal of the season and grab a point.
Italian Serie A