Substitute Julio Cruz headed home in stoppage time to give Inter Milan a 1-0 home win over Udinese on Sunday and send the Serie A champions top for at least a few hours. Inter had drawn two of their last three league games 0-0 and Mourinho’s side looked to be heading for a third as they continually lumped crosses into the box and lacked creativity. The Nerazzurri manager again tinkered with his stuttering three-pronged attack and welcomed back defender Walter Samuel, out for 11 months with knee trouble, in place of Nicolas Burdisso who made mistakes for two Anorthosis goals on Tuesday. “Udinese for me are a good team. From a defensive point of view, Inter have played really well,” Mourinho told Sky.
Inter 1-0 Udinese Match Report (Channel4)
Cruz stole the limelight late on, but the day still belonged to evergreen scoring machine Alessandro Del Piero, who curled in another stunning free kick for Juventus against coach Di Carlo’s new club Chievo. The Juve captain celebrated his 34th birthday by scoring a third free kick in a week to help put his team level with Udinese on 21 points.
The Juventus captain also converted a free kick in last weekend’s win over AS Roma, and scored another in the 2-0 win at Real Madrid in the Champions League on Wednesday, earning a standing ovation at the Bernabeu (having also netted a superb first). An ovation followed his substitution in Verona on Sunday too and Juve coach Claudio Ranieri, who also saw Vincenzo Iaquinta score, hailed the club’s greatest ever goalscorer. “At the moment, Alex is magic. Alex is the captain but not only the captain, he is a leader,” he said.
Chievo 0-2 Juventus Match Report (Channel4)
Second-placed Napoli beat Sampdoria 2-0 to lie a point above Milan and Lazio, who defeated Siena 3-0 at home thanks to a brace by Tommaso Rocchi and Mauro Zarate’s goal.
Genoa are a point further behind in an extremely tight top half of Serie A after Diego Milito’s hat-trick sealed a 4-0 home victory over bottom side Reggina. Fiorentina are also on 20 points following a 2-1 triumph over Atalanta, while Catania‘s 2-1 home win over Cagliari (goals by Jeda, Mascara. and Sabato) puts them right behind La Viola on points.
Finally, the evening Saturday and Sunday matches did not bear the right fruits for Roma and AC Milan, both victim of a late-match equalizer in spectacular fashion against Bologna and Lecce respectively. On Saturday, the Giallorossi celebrated the return of Francesco Totti to almost full-fitness by leading their captain to a well-taken goal, but a misheaded clearance by Cicinho tied the game for the home team late into stoppage time. On Sunday, Milan shared a similar fate when Andrea Esposito tied Ronaldinho’s opener very late in the game.
Bologna 1-1 Roma Match Report (mCalcio)
Lecce 1-1 AC Milan Match Report (mCalcio)
GOALS of the WEEK
Honour goes to free-kicks this week, and for the first time in this segment, a double winner!! And indeed, very deserving are Alessandro Del Piero and Mauro Zarate, don’t cha think?
| Serie A 2008-09
Posted in Serie A |