MILAN (AP) -Cagliari was held to a goalless draw at home by Catania in Serie A on Saturday amid fears it could forfeit another match.
The Sardinian side had the best of the few opportunities, with Marco Sau twice denied by Catania goalkeeper Mariano Andujar at the end of the first half.
There were fears ahead of kickoff that Cagliari could risk forfeiting the match through again flouting a stadium ban. The club had announced on Friday that Is Arenas would be completely open but an emergency meeting in the afternoon saw local authorities rule that the main stand would remain closed.
Hundreds of fans turned up with tickets for the stand amid rumors it would be open after all, leading to fears of another enforced defeat following the debacle of the Roma match.
However, the stand remained closed to all but media and VIPs and the match went ahead without incident.
Catania, fresh from an impressive 4-0 hammering of Lazio, went closest to taking the lead in the opening stages when Giovanni Marchese drilled into the sidenetting.
However, Cagliari slowly got into the game and almost took the lead on the half-hour mark when Andrea Cossu stole the ball off Nicola Legrottaglie and raced down the left flank before putting in a great cross which Sau was millimeters away from connecting with.
Daniele Dessena also went close with a long-range effort which flew wide of the right upright, althought Catania goalkeeper Andujar had it covered.
Cagliari should have gone in at halftime in front as in the final minute Sau skipped past a tackle and into the penalty area before rounding the goalkeeper but Andujar recovered to pull off a fantastic save.
From the resulting corner Sau's header drew another good reflex save from Andujar at point-blank range.
Sau had another chance immediately after the break. Radja Nainggolan pounced on a poor clearance and his shot was deflected straight to Sau but he completely mishit his effort from eight yards and the danger was cleared.