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Jan 13, 2014

Domenico Berardi thrilled with display

Sassuolo striker Domenico Berardi looked back on a night he will "never forget" as he saved his coach Eusebio Di Francesco's job with all four goals in a 4-3 win over AC Milan on Sunday.

Paul: Sassuolo show stuns Milan

Berardi, 19, became the youngest ever player to score four goals in an Italian top-flight fixture, putting the Rossoneri to the sword with a performance which even received praise from opponent and potential future Italy team mate Mario Balotelli.

"Compliments to Berardi and good luck. Truly fantastic," Balotelli tweeted on Sunday night.

 

The youngster’s four goals helped lift Sassuolo out of the Serie A relegation zone and took him joint-second with Carlos Tevez in the league’s scoring charts, three goals behind Giuseppe Rossi.

"It's a day I'll never forget," Berardi told Sky Sport Italia. "I dedicate these four goals to [team mate Francesco] Acerbi, to my family and to my girlfriend."

He also dedicated the win to his under-fire coach, who was widely expected to be relieved of his duties in the event of a defeat.

"Our coach was fighting for his job and I'm delighted for him," Berardi said of Di Francesco. "He's brought us from Serie B into Serie A and he has a big heart, like all of us."

Berardi will celebrate the performance with his return to the Italy setup, having been called up for a training camp with the U21s after a nine-month absence.

The forward, whose registration lies with Juventus, declined a call-up to the U19s for a qualifying tournament in Russia last May. He was consequently banned for nine months for having violated the national team's code of conduct.

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