Serie A roundup

Inter Milan held by struggling Genoa

December 22, 2012
By ESPN.com news services

Struggling Genoa held Inter Milan to a 1-1 draw with a spirited performance at the San Siro on Saturday.

Genoa soaked up the pressure and frustrated its hosts before going in front through Ciro Immobile in the 77th minute.

Esteban Cambiasso heads home Inter Milan's late leveller against Genoa
GettyImagesEsteban Cambiasso heads home Inter Milan's late equalizing goal against Genoa.

Inter's efforts were finally rewarded in the 85th minute with Esteban Cambiasso pulling them level, but Marko Livaja missed a glorious chance to win it as the Nerazzurri only managed to reduce the gap to Juventus at the top of the table to nine points.

Inter spent much of the game on the attack with Genoa defending well and waiting for rare chances on the break.

Former Genoa striker Rodrigo Palacio had the first chance for the Nerazzurri in the 10th minute when he controlled the ball on his chest, but he allowed it to get just a bit too far in front of him, enabling goalkeeper Sebastien Frey to get there first.

Immobile had Genoa's only shot of the first half from 20 yards with Samir Handanovic remaining alert to push it wide after a slight deflection.

Palacio wasted Inter's next big chance at the start of the second half when he shot over from just inside the area, with Andreas Granqvist putting him under pressure.

Frey made a good save to deny Palacio four minutes later before Handanovic courageously pushed the ball away from Marco Rossi at the other end.

Inter continued to press and got caught on the break in the 77th minute.

Luca Antonelli sent a long ball forward to Immobile, whose excellent first touch set him up for a run at goal and he skipped past Andrea Ranocchia before threading the ball under Handanovic.

Inter responded eight minutes later, with Cambiasso stealing between two defenders to head the leveller from seven yards.

The home side continued to throw men forward and almost took the points in the last minute when Diego Milito's cross was met by Livaja at the far post, but he struck his shot against the woodwork from just a yard out.

Lazio moved up to second place as Hernanes scored the only goal of a hard-fought 1-0 away win against Sampdoria.

Hernanes netted after 31 minutes to net the opener and Lazio went on to claim all three points.

A brace from Erik Lamela inspired Roma to a 4-2 home victory over AC Milan at the Stadio Olimpico.

Nicolas Burdisso broke the deadlock in the 13th minute with Pablo Osvaldo doubling Roma's lead 10 minutes later.

Lamela's double ensured there was no way back for the visitors, who at least grabbed late consolations through Giampaolo Pazzini and Bojan Krkic after Marquinho was sent off for Roma.

Stevan Jovetic struck a second-half brace as freescoring Fiorentina ensured it would finish 2012 in the Champions League places with a comfortable 3-0 victory at lowly Palermo.

Jovetic, who had been a question mark for the match because of a thigh problem, opened the scoring in the 50th minute and then doubled his side's lead with a penalty seven minutes from time.

Jovetic might have been celebrating a hat trick in the final minute after Fiorentina had won another penalty, but centre back Gonzalo Rodrmguez took over spot-kick duties and confidently converted.

Two late goals saw Napoli end a chastening week with a flourish following a 2-0 triumph at 10-man Siena.

Christian Maggio broke the deadlock in the 86th minute, while Edison Cavani netted immediately after from the spot after Goran Pandev had been upended in the area by Felipe dal Belo.

It was just reward for the visitors, who end the year in fifth and 10 points behind Juventus, but Siena's afternoon was compounded in added time when Emanuele Calaio was sent off after needlessly elbowing Valeron Behrani.

Parma came from behind to pick up a 2-1 win over Bologna that takes them up to eighth.

Frederik Sorensen's first goal of the season put Bologna in front in the 54th minute but goals from Jaime Valdes and Nicola Sansone earned Roberto Donadoni's side all three points. Bologna drops to within three points of the bottom three with its 10th defeat of the season.

German Denis netted from the penalty spot to leave Atalanta and Udinese locked together in mid-table after taking a point apiece from a 1-1 draw in Bergamo.

Muriel gave the visitors the lead in the 33rd minute, but Denis responded from the penalty spot for the hosts, who remain two points behind their visitors in 10th place.

Torino pulled clear of the relegation zone as a Gennaro Sardo own goal and a Alessandro Gazzi strike secured a solid 2-0 home victory against Chievo.

The hosts came into the match on the back of a five-match winless streak that had seen them slip close to the bottom three but looked comfortable as they picked up three points for the first time since Nov. 11. Defeat for Chievo brings a halt to its three-game winning streak.

Information from Press Association was used in this report.