Genoa kicked off the Serie A campaign with a 1-0 win at Udinese, Giandomenico Mesto scoring a late winner against his former club.
The visitors, who have spent more than any Italian side this summer, practically constructing a new team, made the best of starts to 2010/11 with a rare away win at the Stadio Friuli. The only goal of the game came towards the end of a tight encounter, with the 28-year-old substitute taking I Rossoblu provisionally to the top of the table.
After a hot and sunny day in the Friuli-Venezia-Giulia region, the heavens opened an hour before kick-off and the rain seemed to dampen the anticipation of a new season of football in Italy.
Neither side was able to entertain the fans in the first half, with the only real chance falling to Genoa striker Giuseppe Sculli in the 24th minute. His header was saved on the line by Samir Handanovic, before Gokhan Inler cleared the danger ahead of the forward.
The first half ended on a worrying note for the away side when Luca Toni, one of their many new arrivals this summer, limped off with a thigh strain and was replaced by Raffaele Palladino.
Genoa's new goalkeeper Eduardo came into his own in the second half, showing courage and alertness to thwart any danger the home side could create.
The game appeared to be heading for a stalemate until a moment of magic from Mesto broke the deadlock in the 81st minute. Omar Milanetto's cross from the right was nodded down by Dario Dainelli, and an acrobatic overhead kick from the former Italy international beat Handanovic and sank Udinese.