Saturday, 2 February 2008

Serie A Week 21: Saturday Review

Napoli denied Udinese the chance to close the gap on the top four with victory, on a day when Palermo moved up to seventh in Serie A with three points against Livorno.

Udinese started the day four points adrift of fourth-placed Fiorentina but had a disasterous start at Napoli's Stadio San Paolo when Cristian Zapata put the ball in his own net with just three minutes played. Simone Pepe restored parity five minutes later however and before the interval the hosts were down to ten men following Paolo Cannavaro's dismissal. Just short of the hour it became ten-a-side though following a straight red card for Pepe and two goals in as many minutes by Ezequiel Lavezzi 15 minutes from time proved decisive in securing victory for Napoli. It was a win that moves the Azzurri up to ninth.

Palermo rode their luck on the way to a 1-0 win over Livorno. Both goalkeepers Alberto Fontana and Marco Amelia were in stunning form, stopping everything that came at them. Livorno even missed a penalty through Francesco Tavano before Fabrizio Miccoli found the back of the net after 76 minutes to earn the Sicilians all three points and get them off to a good start in February after a torrid January. Francesco Guidolin's side had lost all three games since the turn of the year, but their first win in 2008 puts them back in the race for a place in Europe. Livorno lick their wounds for the second time in six days after losing to Juventus last weekend.

[Saturday 2 Feb] - [Sunday 3 Feb]

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