Thursday, April 18, 2019

Four-star Roma keep title race alive

in Serie A 27 Apr 2008

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AS Roma kept the Serie A title race alive for another week at least with a four-goal destruction of sorry Torino at the Stadio Olimpico on Sunday as Italy’s top flight went goal crazy.

Roma’s 4-1 victory meant that leaders Inter Milan, who beat lowly Cagliari 2-1, can secure their third straight scudetto crown if they beat AC Milan in next weekend’s Milanese derby.

Milan kept their Champions League hopes alive as they cantered to a 4-1 demolition of rock-bottom Livorno while Fiorentina conceded a goal deep into injury time to draw 2-2 at home to Sampdoria.

That cut Milan’s deficit to Fiorentina in the race for fourth place to just two points with three matches to play.

Juventus ensured they will play in Europe’s premier competition next season as they thrashed Lazio 5-2.

The match in Rome was over after a little more than half an hour as Torino’s porous defence disintegrated.

The first came courtesy of a generously-awarded penalty for a non-existent foul on Simone Perrotta, with Chile international David Pizarro stepping up to score from 12 yards on 18 minutes.

Two minutes later Macedonia forward Mirko Vucinic slotted home a Perrotta pass from a tight angle, although goalkeeper Alberto Fontana should have done better.

A few minutes later and Brazilian Alessandro Mancini managed to head home a deep right-wing cross from compatriot Cicinho from inside the six yard box, although Torino should never have allowed the ball to travel that far.

Mancini then added the fourth on 32 minutes, tapping home from close range after more inept defending. Nicola Ventola scored a second half consolation for the visitors.

In Milan Inter survived an early scare after their defence parted like the biblical seas to present Alessandro Matri with a great chance but he shot wide.

On 22 minutes Argentine striker Julio Cruz headed home a cross from France captain Patrick Vieira.

Marco Materazzi headed home a corner late on before a last minute goal from Davide Biondini gave Cagliari something to cheer.

In Livorno Filippo Inzaghi poached a goal from close range on 23 minutes, although there was a strong suspicion of offside when he converted Kaka’s pass following good work from Andrea Pirlo and Clarence Seedorf.

Two headers gave Inzaghi his hat-trick before veteran Dutch midfielder Seedorf scored a fourth and Dario Knezevic gave the hosts a consolation.

Fiorentina fell behind to a goal from Cristian Maggio in the second half but Cristian Vieri equalised and Adrian Mutu gave the hosts the lead from the spot.

However Daniele Gastaldello struck three minutes into stoppage time to salvage a point for Samp and dent La Viola’s Champions League hopes.

In Turin Giorgio Chiellini gave Juve an early lead with a header before goals from Mauro Camoranesi, Alessandro Del Piero and David Trezeguet put the hosts into an unassailable 4-0 lead after just 34 minutes.

Lazio hit back after the break as goals from Rolando Bianchi and Sebastiano Siviglia reduced the deficit before Chiellini bundled home his second late on.

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