Sunday, 15 April 2007

Serie A Wk 32: Review

Saturday 14 April
Udinese 2-1 Chievo
Chievo remain just three points above the Serie A drop zone following a narrow defeat at Udinese on Saturday evening. The Flying Donkeys got off to the ideal start in Udine when Sergio Pellissier gave them a 10th-minute lead with a superb solo goal. Vincenzo Iaquinta levelled for the hosts 11 minutes before the interval and Antonio Di Natale struck the winner 16 minutes from time. Both sides finished the match with 10 men following the late dismissals of Udinese's Andrea Coda and Chievo's Fabio Moro. The result leaves Chievo precariously placed, just two spots about the relegation mire with seven games remaining, while Udinese move up a place to ninth to revive their hopes of playing in Europe next season.

Cagliari 0-0 Empoli
Cagliari picked up a point in a goalless draw at home to Empoli on Saturday afternoon to move nine clear of the relegation zone. In an entertaining game, both sides showed their full array of skills but neither managed to create the telling clear-cut chance. Both had to settle in the end for a 0-0 draw which helps Empoli keep up the pressure on the top five and gives Cagliari a healthy cushion above the bottom three.

Sunday 15 April
Inter 2-2 Palermo

A remarkable game at the San Siro saw Internazionale claw their way back from 2-0 down to maintain their unbeaten record in this season's Serie A. The champions-elect were a goal down after just three minutes when Andrea Caracciolo struck and they fell further behind when Andrea Barzagli grabbed a second on the stroke of half-time. But clinical strikes from Julio Ricardo Cruz and Adriano in the space of eight second-half minutes ensured Roberto Mancini's side kept their impressive record intact. Inter will lift the Scudetto on Wednesday if they beat second-placed Roma in Milan.

Roma 4-0 Sampdoria
Roma put their nightmare Champions League defeat against Manchester United behind them with an emphatic 4-0 victory over Sampdoria. The Giallorossi went into the encounter at the Stadio Olimpico on the back of a 7-1 midweek loss to the Premiership side which saw their dreams of progressing to the semi-final stages of Europe's elite club competition crushed. Captain Francesco Totti gave the hosts a 20th-minute lead before scoring his second shortly after the hour mark. Matteo Ferrari soon added another for Roma before veteran defender Cristian Panucci made it 4-0 three minutes from time. The outcome sees the Giallorossi take a firm grip on second position in the standings with eight games remaining.

Ascoli 2-2 Lazio
An action-packed last 20 minutes saw four goals and a sending-off as bottom club Ascoli held third-placed Lazio in a dramatic 2-2 draw. Luigi Di Biagio thought he had won it for the hosts with 14 minutes remaining when he netted after Tommaso Rocchi's equaliser from the penalty spot after Guglielmo Stendardo saw red for a late challenge. But Luis Jimenez stole a late point for Lazio, in a game where Andrea Soncin had given the hosts a 70th-minute lead. It was a sickening blow for Ascoli whose bid to avoid relegation is looking doomed as the season approaches its end.

Messina 1-3 Milan
Milan capped a wonderful week with a convincing 3-1 triumph at Messina. Playing after their midweek victory at Bayern Munich that clinched a place in the Champions League semi-finals, the Rossoneri stepped up their bid to play in next season's elite European club competition. Brazilian midfielder Kaka opened the scoring for the visitors in the 14th minute before Giuseppe Favalli extended his team's lead on the half-hour mark. Ronaldo struck his side's third four minutes from the end but the hosts got a consolation goal with midfielder Salvatore Masiello striking deep in stoppage time.

Fiorentina 1-0 Siena
Ten-man Fiorentina got the better of Siena 1-0 in a Tuscany derby battle to boost their quest for UEFA Cup football. Adrian Mutu scored the only goal two minutes before the break and the Viola survived the second-half sending-off of Alessandro Gamberini to pick up three more points in a clash between cities that used to fight wars with each other during the Italian renaissance. Were it not for a 15-point deduction for their part in the Calciopoli scandal, Cesare Prandelli's side would have a tight grip on a Champions League position but can only really hope for the continent's second competition next season. Siena, meanwhile, are still too close for comfort to the relegation zone to count any chickens about another season in the elite division yet.

Livorno 1-1 Reggina
Reggina remain precariously positioned just one place above the Serie A relegation zone after picking up only a point in a 1-1 draw against mid-table Livorno at the Stadio Armando Picchi. Cristiano Lucarelli gave the hosts the lead in the 27th minute, but that was cancelled out by Rolando Bianchi four minutes later as Walter Mazzarri's side looked for the win which would have given them a cushion over the bottom three. As it is, they head into Wednesday's vital derby clash against Messina just three points above their near-neighbours, who currently sit second from bottom.

Torino 1-2 Atalanta
Ten-man Atalanta survived a second-half onslaught from Torino to hold on to a 2-1 win which moves them up to eighth in the table. The visitors were two goals up inside eight minutes after Gianpaolo Bellini and Riccardo Zampagna capitalised on defensive errors, but they had to play for 50 minutes with 10 men after the sending-off of Periero Adriano. Despite pulling a goal back on 77 minutes through substitute Elvis Abbruscato, a combination of bad luck and poor finishing consigned Torino to a defeat which leaves Gianni De Biasi's side languishing in 14th place.

Parma 1-1 Catania
Parma and Catania both inched another point closer to safety as they shared the spoils from a 1-1 draw. The result maintained Parma's four-game unbeaten run which has given them every chance of avoiding the drop, while Catania at least managed to end a four-game losing streak. The visitors had led in the 20th minute when Gionatha Spinesi found the net, but Parma equalised 12 minutes later with Fernando Couto scoring the goal which ultimately earned them a draw.

No comments:

Post a Comment