Juventus maintain title charge

A review of the weekend's action in the Italian Serie A as Juventus maintain their nine-point advantage.

Last Updated: 16/02/14 at 22:27 Post Comment

Juventus celebrate against Chievo

Juventus celebrate against Chievo

A review of the weekend's action in Italy's Serie A.

Juventus cruised to a 3-1 victory over Chievo to retain their nine-point advantage in Serie A.

Kwadwo Asamoah and Claudio Marchisio gave the Bianconeri a comfortable lead at the break, but a bizarre own goal from Martin Caceres gave the visitors hope.

Fernando Llorente settled Juve's nerves, however, to ensure a return to winning ways after a draw at Hellas Verona.

Roma kept pace with a 3-0 win over a Sampdoria side who finished the night down to 10 men.

Mattia Destro scored twice, either side of a Miralem Pjanic free-kick, as Roma overpowered the visitors.

Things got worse for Samp late on as Daniele Gastaldello saw a second yellow card for a careless lunge in the direction of Kevin Strootman.

Napoli kept the pressure on Roma thanks to their third win in a week wtih a 2-0 victory at Sassuolo.

Blerim Dzemaili and Lorenzo Insigne scored the goals for Rafael Benitez's men, who beat AC Milan 3-1 and Roma 3-0 over the past seven days and appear to have hit form ahead of their trip to Swansea in the Europa League on Thursday.

Sassuolo tried to find a route back into the game while Gonzalo Higuain left the field with an injury, giving Benitez some cause for concern, despite Napoli's latest victory.

Atalanta's solid home record was put to the sword by a rampant Parma side who struck three times inside the final 15 minutes en route to an impressive 4-0 win.

The hosts had only lost twice at the Atleti Azzurri d'Italia stadium this season and went into Sunday's match eyeing a third straight win on their own patch.

Yet in Parma they met a side in sterling form and riding an unbeaten sequence dating back to November 2, and their confidence told as strikes by Cristian Molinaro, Antonio Cassano and Ezequiel Schelotto, plus a Yohan Benalouane own goal, saw them to the three points.

Livorno climbed out of the relegation zone thanks to a 2-1 victory at fellow strugglers Cagliari in a game which saw three men sent off.

The Tuscan side headed to Sardinia third from bottom in the standings and seven points behind their hosts, but took control of the game courtesy of Emerson's opener and a Paulinho penalty either side of the break.

Nene pulled one back for Cagliari after 64 minutes, but their hopes of equalising suffered a blow seven minutes later when Daniele Conti saw red for foul and abusive language.

The visitors finished the match even further reduced in numbers following the late dismissals of Federico Ceccherini and Marco Benassi, but held on for the three points.

Lazio suffered their first defeat in six games and their first under coach Edy Reja as they went down to a surprise 3-1 defeat away to Catania.

The relegation-threatened Sicilian outfit ended a run of three straight draws to ease the pressure on coach Rolando Maran.

The defeat also dealt a blow to the European qualification hopes of Reja's side.

Mariano Izco opened the scoring for the home side after just one minute, but Stefano Mauri drew the Roman club level on the stroke of half-time.

Further goals from Nicolas Spolli and Gino Peruzzi ensured the home side claimed all three points.

Genoa showed excellent fighting spirit to come from behind to snatch a point at home to Udinese in a 3-3 draw.

Dusan Basta and Bruno Fernandes gave Francesco Guidolin's side a two-goal lead, but Pape Moussa Konate's first goal in Serie A reduced the arrears on the stroke of half-time.

Luis Muriel restored Udinese's two-goal advantage from the penalty spot just after half-time, but two goals from Alberto Gilardino earned Genoa a point.

On Saturday, Inter Milan won on the road for the first time since November as goals from Rodrigo Palacio and substitute Mauro Icardi saw them beat Fiorentina 2-1 at the Stadio Artemio Franchi.

The Serie A victory over Vincenzo Montella's confirmed Coppa Italia finalists saw Inter close to within five points of their fourth-placed hosts in the last European berth.

La Viola were off colour following their midweek cup heroics and finally succumbed to Inter's relentless first-half assault when Palacio used close control to outwit goalkeeper Neto.

Juan Cuadrado exploited a lapse in concentration from Samir Handanovic to level immediately after the break but Icardi emerged from the bench to score the winner.

Mario Balotelli stuck four minutes from the end as AC Milan scraped a 1-0 win over Bologna on Friday night.

The Rossoneri were looking to bounce back from last weekend's 3-1 defeat at Napoli, their first league loss under new coach Clarence Seedorf, and only just avoided another frustrating outing as Bologna's battling rearguard finally gave way in the closing stages.

Collecting the ball in the right channel, the Italy international took a touch before sending a thunderous strike into the top-left corner from 35 yards, the ball moving wickedly in the air and leaving Bologna goalkeeper Gianluca Curci helpless.


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