Serie A: Del Piero brace helps Juve up to second

December 15, 2007

ROME, Dec 15 (Reuters) - Alessandro Del Piero scored two second-half goals to inspire Juventus to a 3-2 win at Lazio on Saturday, lifting his side to second in Serie A.

The visitors took the lead in the 29th minute when France striker David Trezeguet deflected in his 12th goal of the season after a goalmouth scramble.

Lazio levelled in the 36th when Tommaso Rocchi found Massimo Mutarelli in the area and the midfielder volleyed the ball across the face of goal for Macedonia striker Goran Pandev to head in.

Juve captain Del Piero, making his first start in four league games, then latched on to a long pass and drilled the ball into the far corner three minutes after the break.

The Rome side pressed forward in search of the equaliser but were caught on the counter-attack in the 70th as Del Piero scored a goal similar to his first.

Pandev pulled one back for Lazio in stoppage time.

Juventus have 32 points from 16 games and share second place with AS Roma, who visit Torino on Sunday.

Leaders Inter Milan, who have 37 points, travel to Cagliari on Sunday.

CATANIA WIN

Earlier on Saturday, Catania beat high-fliers Udinese 2-0 at home thanks to two Giuseppe Mascara goals.

The Sicilians struck in the eighth minute when Peruvian full back Juan Manuel Vargas skipped past a defender on the left and whipped in a cross that Mascara converted.

Italy striker Fabio Quagliarella volleyed over a good chance for Udinese in the second minute and went close again in the 37th.

Udinese's Antonio Floro Flores also had a powerful shot pushed away on the half-hour mark.

Catania defended their advantage comfortably in the second half and Mascara put the result beyond doubt three minutes from time.

Udinese stay fourth with 28 points while Catania climb to eighth on 21.