Archive for March 2nd, 2009

Sampdoria 2-1 Milan: Cassano & Pazzini Sink the Rossoneri Boat (Serie A Matchday 26)

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Sampdoria 2-1 Milan: Cassano & Pazzini Sink the Rossoneri Boat (Serie A Matchday 26)

February just isn’t AC Milan‘s month. With the exception of a (valuable, but unconvincing) victory obtained against Cagliari, the Rossoneri’s performances since their 3-0 thumping of Lazio have been punctuated by mediocrity. They tied to Reggina, lost the Derby della Madonnina to Inter, and got eliminated from the UEFA Cup. Sunday’s match against Sampdoria marks the latest day of a very rainy month for Carlo Ancelotti, his team decimated by injuries and persecuted by fate.

As for the Blucerchiati, perhaps getting rid of European cup engagements was not such a bad thing. Well rested after skipping their mid-week fixture, Cassano & Pazzini were in fine form to provide the winning goals for their team today.

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Palermo 0-4 Catania: Rossazzurri K.O. Rosanero, Mascara Scores a Wonder-Goal (Serie A Matchday 26)

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Palermo 0-4 Catania: Rossazzurri K.O. Rosanero, Mascara Scores a Wonder-Goal (Serie A Matchday 26)

There comes a time when the soccer blogger, journalist, or newscaster is at a loss for words to comment the spectacle he/she sees on his/her TV scren. Palermo vs Catania is one such example, because “crazy” doesn’t even begin to describe what happened at Renzo Barbera stadium today.

Gazzetta defined the following “miracles of a derby”:

  • Believe or not (this had me floored when I read it), Catania had not won an away match for over one year and a half. How did they choose to break that negative trend? With a 4-0 victory, against Palermo of all teams.
  • This season and before this match, the Rossazzurri had only scored six on away games.
  • The last away victory of Catania in the Derby della Sicilia was 16 years ago, back when the two teams were still in Serie C1,
  • Giuseppe Mascara‘s last goal in the Serie A dated back to December (hat-trick to Torino). How did he break the ice? A smashing 50m half-volley right under the crossbar, a goal-of-the-year contender if there ever was one.
  • Ironically, Catania’s man-of-the-match wasn’t any of their scorers, but their keeper. With five fantastic saves on the 3-0, Albano Bizarri kept a clean sheet and concurrently provided the cherry on the cake on an already wonderful team performance.

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Juventus 1-0 Napoli: “Claudio Marchisio” Wipes Stamford Bridge Tears Away (Serie A Matchday 26)

Monday, March 2nd, 2009

Juventus midfielder Claudio Marchisio, right, celebrates after scoring during the Italian Serie A soccer match between Juventus and Napoli, at the Olympic Stadium in Turin, Italy, Saturday, Feb. 28, 2009.  (AP Photo)

It may not be champagne football, but Juventus know just what to do to pick themselves up. I wouldn’t say the “Stamford Bridge scar is healing” (Gazzetta‘s words, personally I wouldn’t even call it a scar – things are still very open for the second leg) but Saturday the Bianconeri demonstrated once again maximum efficiency with minimum effort: very few shots on target, one goal in the first half, preservation of the lead in the second.

As for Napoli, yesterday marked the 8th consecutive away loss for the Azzurri, a team which in their last 8 matches has been able to score only two points. And while Edy Reja’s boys at least tried to muster some kind of a pride reaction in the second half, it looks like the Neapolitan manager’s tenure at the club is hanging by a very thin thread indeed.

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