Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Serie A - Week 30: Wednesday Review

Inter took advantage of a late defeat for AC Milan to extend their lead in Serie A to four points by coasting to a 3-0 victory at home against Livorno, although Roma remain in the hunt for the Scudetto. Elsewhere Palermo were held in the race for the Champions League spots, while Sampdoria and Fiorentina lost.

Inter 3-0 Livorno
Inter extended their lead at the top of the Serie A table to four points as they recorded a comfortable victory over bottom club Livorno at the San Siro. The result, coupled with city rivals AC Milan's defeat, hands a major boost to Jose Mourinho's side's bid to retain their title. Their goals came courtesy of a double from Cameroon striker Samuel Eto'o and a further strike from Brazil defender Maicon as Serse Cosmi's side were ruthlessly brushed aside.

Parma 1-0 Milan
AC Milan's revitalised Serie A title hopes took a blow as Valeri Bojinov's injury-time winner condemned them to defeat at Parma. Milan, who had clawed their way back into the Scudetto picture and were just a point off leaders Inter heading into Wednesday night's round, are now four behind their rivals after slipping up at mid-table Parma. Leonardo's side dominated the play throughout but failed to produce many clear chances before Bojinov came off the bench to tap in a dramatic winner for the home team.

Bologna 0-2 Roma
Roma struck twice in the second half to beat Bologna and stay in the Serie A title race. John Arne Riise broke the deadlock after 48 minutes before substitute Julio Baptista put the game beyond Bologna's reach with eight minutes remaining. The outcome lifted Roma level on 59 points with second-placed AC Milan, who lost 1-0 at Parma. Both sides trail league leaders Inter by four points with eight games remaining. Roma welcome Inter to the Stadio Olimpico on Saturday in a match that could reopen the title race, while Milan host Lazio on Sunday.

Genoa 2-2 Palermo
A dramatic last-ditch penalty earned Genoa a share of the spoils with a 2-2 draw against Palermo at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris. Abel Hernandez put Palermo in front after 34 minutes, but Salvatore Bocchetti equalised for the home side with 15 minutes remaining. A goal from Javier Pastore three minutes later seemed to have earned Palermo all three points but Houssine Kharja levelled with the last kick of the game from the penalty spot deep into stoppage time after the visitors had been reduced to 10 men with Simon Kjaer sent off. Palermo remain fourth in Serie A, one point ahead of fifth-placed Sampdoria, while Genoa are five points adrift of the Sicilians.

Bari 2-1 Sampdoria
Bari recovered from a goal down to beat Sampdoria 2-1 in Serie A and dent the visitors' chances of claiming the final Champions League qualifying place. Antonio Cassano put Samp in front after 19 minutes but Riccardo Meggiorini equalised for Bari just before the hour mark and Paulo Vito Barreto snatched all three points for the home side four minutes from time. The defeat means Samp squandered the chance to move fourth in the table after Palermo were held to a 2-2 draw at Genoa after conceding a last-minute equaliser.

Catania 1-0 Fiorentina
Fiorentina's bid to claim a European place next season stalled following an away defeat at Catania. Giuseppe Mascara scored the only goal of the game after two minutes to ease the hosts' relegation fears as they moved seven points clear of danger. Fiorentina only had themselves to blame for not taking something from the match as they continually wasted chances to score and now face an uphill task to qualify for Europe. The Viola dropped to 10th place with the defeat and are four points behind sixth-placed Juventus who have a game in hand.

Lazio 2-0 Siena
Lazio eased their relegation worries with a comfortable triumph over Siena at the Stadio Olimpico. Stephan Lichtsteiner opened the scoring just six minutes into the game and substitute Julio Cruz doubled the advantage after 72 minutes as the Biancoceleste clinched their second consecutive victory. It has been a dour season for the Romans, but back-to-back triumphs have lifted them to 16th in the standings, four points clear of the drop zone with eight games remaining. Siena, meanwhile, have complicated their Serie A existence. They now lie second from bottom, seven points behind Udinese who hold the last position of safety.

Atalanta 3-1 Cagliari
Two second-half goals by Jaime Valdes and a strike by Simone Tiribocchi saw Atalanta earn a vital victory over a Cagliari side that played for more than 70 minutes with 10 men after Daniele Dessena was sent off. Although Daniele Conti scored an injury-time consolation, it was a miserable evening for Cagliari who also missed a penalty and squandered a chance to move into the top eight of Serie A. The result leaves Atalanta still third from bottom of the table, four points adrift of Udinese and safety.

Udinese 0-0 Chievo
Udinese had to settle for a point in their battle for Serie A survival after being held to a goalless draw at home to Chievo. The home side are now just one place and four points above the drop zone after relegation rivals Lazio won 2-0 at home to Siena to move above them in the table. Coach Pasquale Marino had been looking for his side to bounce back from their 4-2 defeat to Roma in their previous game, but they were unable to find the net.

[Wednesday 24 March] - [Thursday 25 March]

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