Serie A review

Juve and Milan both triumph

April 29, 2012
By ESPNsoccernet staff

Juventus moved a step closer to the Serie A title with a thumping 4-0 win at struggling Novara.

Mirko Vucinic got two, opening and completing the scoring, while Marco Borriello and Arturo Vidal were also on target as Juve retained their three-point lead over AC Milan at the top.

Second-bottom Novara are almost down, though, this defeat leaving them eight points from safety with three games left.

AC Milan maintained their challenge for the Scudetto with a convincing 4-1 win over Siena that keeps them three points behind Serie A leaders Juventus with three games to go.

AC Milan Antonio Cassano celeb
GettyImagesAntonio Cassano has crossed the Milan divide

Zlatan Ibrahimovic was on target twice to extend his lead at the top of the Serie A scoring charts, while Antonio Cassano and Antonio Nocerino were also on target.

Erjon Bogdani gave Siena a moment of hope in the 83rd minute when he made it 2-1 before two late goals sealed the win for Massimiliano Allegri's side.

Udinese moved into a four-team tie for third place in Serie A with three games of the season remaining thanks to a 2-0 win over rivals Lazio at the Stadio Friuli.

Antonio Di Natale scored midway through the second half with a spectacular volley before Roberto Pereyra sealed the win in stoppage time to take Francesco Guidolin's side level on 55 points with Lazio, but leaving them above Eduardo Reja's side thanks to a superior head-to-head record.

Lazio defender Andre Dias saw red as tempers flared at the end of the match with fights breaking out on and off the field.

The result leaves Inter Milan and Napoli also even on points with Udinese and Lazio as the race for Serie A's final place in the Champions League looks set to go down to the wire.

Inter Milan maintained their late charge for a Champions League berth with a battling 2-1 win at home to relegated Cesena .

Inter recovered from the shock of going behind to a Luca Ceccarelli strike to rally for their fourth win in six league matches since Andrea Stramaccioni replaced Claudio Ranieri as coach.

Goals by Joel Obi and Mauro Zarate sealed the points for the hosts, who are now level on 55 points with Napoli, who held the final Champions League berth heading into the weekend's Serie A fixtures.

Genoa risk leaving Liguria without a Serie A club next season after falling to a 3-2 defeat at Bologna, who have at least ensured that another Emilia-Romagna side will not be following Cesena into Serie B thanks to their seventh home win of the season.

Daniele Portanova gave the home team the lead in the 24th minute and Gaston Ramirez added a second before the break.

Rodrigo Palacio reduced the arrears on the hour mark, but Gyorgy Garics restored Bologna's two-goal advantage soon after.

Cristobal Jorquera gave Genoa hope going into the last 10 minutes, but the defeat means they will end the weekend inside the bottom three if Lecce beat Parma, leaving them three games to save their season.

Lecce remained in the Serie A relegation zone after losing 2-1 an exciting clash with mid-table Parma at the Stadio Via del Mare.

Lecce, inspired by the lively David Di Michele, had the best chances in a goalless first half only to go two behind as Sebastian Giovinco and Gabriel Paletta scored for the visitors.

Nenad Tomovic reduced the deficit with seven minutes to go but Lecce could not find a second and instead had Andrea Esposito sent off in injury-time.

The result leaves them third from bottom and a point below Genoa.

Atalanta ended any lingering fears about relegation after continuing their recent good form with a 2-0 home victory over Fiorentina, who still have a little work to do before they can celebrate safety themselves.

Goals at the start of either half from German Denis and Giacomo Bonaventura earned Atalanta a third win in four games and moved them 11 points clear of third-bottom Lecce with only three games remaining.