Sunday, 5 April 2009

Serie A - Week 30: Sunday Review

Juventus 3-3 ChievoInter took a big stride towards retaining the Serie A title after a late own goal gave them a 1-0 win at Udinese and Juventus were held 3-3 by Chievo. Milan consolidated third spot while Champions League-chasing trio Genoa, Fiorentina and Roma all won.

Sergio Pellissier was the hat-trick hero as battling Chievo snatched a deserved draw in a thrilling encounter with Juventus in Turin. Pellissier gave the Verona outfit a deserved lead after 25 minutes before Giorgio Chiellini levelled for Juve nine minutes later. The Chievo striker's second of the game handed the visitors the lead at half-time before an own goal by Mario Yepes and a Vincenzo Iaquinta strike turned the game in the Old Lady's favour. However, Pellissier had the last laugh as he stunned the Stadio Olimpico at the death, firing in a equaliser which dents Juve's title hopes and lifts Chievo a point closer to safety at the foot of Serie A.

Udinese 0-1 InterUDINESE 0-1 INTER
Leaders Inter needed a late own goal from Udinese's Mauricio Isla to claim their fourth consecutive Serie A win. The game, which Udinese had the best of, appeared to be heading for stalemate until Isla's attempted clearance after 77 minutes found its way into his own net. With Juve held to a draw earlier, it was enough to extend Nerazzurri's lead at the top of the Serie A table to nine points with only eight games remaining.

AC Milan 2-0 LecceAC MILAN 2-0 LECCE
Two late goals broke Lecce hearts as AC Milan cemented their grip on third place in Serie A with a last-gasp 2-0 win at the San Siro. Ronaldinho and Filippo Inzaghi scored in second-half stoppage time to move Milan to within five points of second-placed Juventus, and four points clear of fourth-placed Genoa. Lecce arguably had the better chances of a lacklustre contest, but the visitors nevertheless left beaten and still mired in the bottom three.

Reggina 0-1 GenoaREGGINA 0-1 GENOA
Genoa remain the pacesetters in the race for fourth spot and the remaining Champions League berth after a narrow win at rock-bottom Reggina. Substitute Thiago Motta scored the only goal of the game in the second half to give Genoa a vital victory which leaves them two points above Fiorentina and five points above Roma with eight games left to play. Reggina look even deeper in trouble as, without a win in the past 17 matches, they are four points adrift at the bottom of the Serie A standings.

Atalanta 1-2 FiorentinaATALANTA 1-2 FIORENTINA
Fiorentina moved above Genoa into fourth place in Serie A thanks to a last-gasp win over 10-man Atalanta. Gianvito Plasmati put the home side ahead four minutes into the second half after a tame opening 45 minutes, but Stevan Jovetic equalised from the penalty spot after Federico Peluso was sent off for a foul on Alberto Gilardino. La Viola pushed for a winner, but they had to wait until 30 seconds from time before Gilardino struck to earn Cesare Prandelli's side a crucial three points in the race for a place in the Champions League next season.

Roma 2-1 BolognaROMA 2-1 BOLOGNA
Francesco Totti returned from injury and struck twice from the penalty spot as Roma beat Serie A strugglers Bologna at the Stadio Olimpico. The Giallorossi captain, who had missed the last four league games with a knee injury, opened Roma's account after 12 minutes when Luigi Lavecchia brought down Max Tonetto in the area. Substitute Massimo Marazzina equalised shortly before the half-hour mark only for Totti to convert another spot-kick on the hour mark after Marcello Castellini fouled Julio Baptista. The result leaves Roma five points adrift of Genoa, while Bologna remain two points clear of the relegation zone.

Cagliari 1-0 CataniaCAGLIARI 1-0 CATANIA
Cagliari continued their improbable push for European football next season with a 1-0 victory over Catania. A winner from substitute Alessandro Matri 10 minutes from time keeps the Sardinian's in the hunt for a Europa League spot. Cagliari, along with Palermo, are four points behind sixth-placed Roma who hold the final European spot. Catania slide further down the bottom half of the table but are 13 points clear of the relegation zone.

Siena 2-0 LazioSIENA 2-0 LAZIO
Struggling Lazio crashed to their third straight defeat at Siena. Emanuele Calaio scored the opener after 25 minutes before Massimo Maccarone put the game beyond Lazio's reach with five minutes remaining. The Tuscans won for the first time at the Stadio Artemio Franchi since January 25 and in the process climbed 10 points clear of the drop zone with eight games remaining. Lazio, meanwhile, dropped to ninth - eight points behind sixth-place Roma, who hold the last European qualifying spot.

Palermo 1-0 TorinoPALERMO 1-0 TORINO
The arrival of a new coach failed to stem the tide for Torino as they suffered a narrow defeat on the road at Palermo. Edison Cavani scored the only goal of the match six minutes into the second period as Palermo cemented their place in the top eight with their 14th win of the campaign. Defeat for new Toro coach Giancarlo Camolese, brought in to replace Walter Novellino prior to the international break, leaves his side mired in the bottom three, still two points from safety but now with just eight matches left to beat the drop.

Sampdoria 2-2 NapoliSAMPDORIA 2-2 NAPOLI
Napoli snatched a last-gasp equaliser at Sampdoria to ensure they stayed a point above their hosts in the Serie A standings. Angelo Palombo twice put Samp ahead in the match but Marcelo Zalayeta cancelled out the first just before half-time and then German Denis pounced in injury time to nick a point for the visitors. The result keeps both sides in midtable.

[Sunday 5 Apr]

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