REF KEEPS ROMA TOP
Home biased refereeing rears it's ugly head in the Olympico as Messina turns
down two 100% penalties for the away side, helping Roma to victory over
Lecce. Juventus and Lazio are equally unimpressive with single goal victories
over Bari and Perugia respectively. Parma thrash Brescia. Milan throw away a
two goal lead at home to Bologna.
18 FEBRUARY 2001
NAPOLI 1-0 INTER
Quiroga made a fantastic tackle to clear the ball as Recoba headed for goal
when brilliantly put through by Vieri. Matuzalem was booked for diving but
made amends with the winning goal. Vidigal dummied Husain's cross and
Matuzalem blasted a first time shot past Frey. Fontana made World class saves
from Ferrante and Vieri. Victory moves Napoli out of the bottom four for the
first time this season.
Attendance : 50,000
Assist : Husain
ATALANTA 1-1 VICENZA
Ventola 40 Sommese 73
Good match with lots of chances by both sides. Christiano Zenoni had the best
of the early chances for the home side inevitably following good work by
Morfeo but shot high over the bar. Toni brilliantly pulled down a long ball
but volleyed horribly wide. Morfeo picked out Ventola with an exquisite pass
and the former Inter striker hit a brilliant first time shot in off the post.
Kallon, who has been struggling this season, hammered a half volley against
the crossbar. Sommese volleyed Vicenza level from Cardone's Beckham style
laser precision cross.
Attendance : 16,900
Assists : Morfeo, Cardone
BARI 0-1 JUVENTUS
Del Piero 81
Poggi, on loan from Roma, gave Bari some much need punch in attack. He
dragged a shot just wide of the post and had a spectacular volley saved by
Van der Sar. Gillet then took over. He threw himself in the air to push a
powerful Inzaghi header onto the post, made another great save as Inzaghi
brilliantly turned his marker in the box to get on the end of David's cross,
saved a Zidane free kick and got up to throw himself at Tacchinardi as he
steamed in for the rebound. Del Piero, probably for the first time in two
seasons, finally showed some of the old magic, he picked the ball up on the
left wing, did a number on Neqrouz as he entered the box and when Gillet
threw himself onto the floor lifted the ball into the far corner of the net.
Inzaghi hammered a shot against the underside of the crossbar. Fonseca made
an appearance as a sub for the first time in 2 years?
Attendance : 33,200
PARMA 3-0 BRESCIA
Parma started well but World Class saves from Buffon prevented Brescia from
taking the lead. Some one touch passing opened up the Parma defence and given
his current form you would have put money on Hubner to score but Buffon made
a superb save. Yllana tried his luck from distance, Buffon got down low to
parry the ball and made THREE saves as Kozminski and Hubner went for
the rebounds. Parma took the lead on their next attack, Mboma converting
Micoud's cross. Amoroso and Mboma combined brilliantly to tee up Conceicao.
Amoroso slipped in Junior with a great pass, he skipped a tackle, rounded the
'keeper and tapped into an empty net.
Attendance : 20,000
Assists : Micoud, Amoroso (2)
PERUGIA 0-1 LAZIO
Saudati flashed a shot wide of the post. Poborsky should have headed Lazio
into the lead but got under Ravanelli's cross. Saudati wasted a string of
great chances and his team paid dearly for an uncharacteristic mistake by
Materazzi. Under pressure from Simone Inzaghi he knocked the ball across
his goal, Castroman intercepted and Simone arrived to score, Mazzantini got
a touch but couldn't keep the ball out.
Lazio's football has been poor since the weekend before the re-start of the
Champions League. It shouldn't be a distraction much longer.
Attendance : 15,000
Assist : Castroman
REGGINA 1-1 FIORENTINA
Zanchetta 45 Chiesa 11
As usual Fiorentina started well and, as usual, they faded. Chiesa gave them
a dream start with a fine strike from outside the box though Taibi's
positioning has to be questioned. Taglialatela and Dionigi had an ugly
collision when going for a cross, Pierini cleared before Brevi got to the
loose ball. Zanchetta equalised with a great shot from the edge of the
penalty area. Mijatovic fell awkwardly and seemed to hurt his bollocks after
challenged for a ball with Stovini. For some reason Repka was convinced
Mijatovic was fouled and cleverly talked himself into a red card.
Attendance : 23,600
Red Card : Repka 88 (Fiorentina)
Assist : Rossi, Cozza
ROMA 1-0 LECCE
A dire match. Roma really missed Totti. Last week Nakata and Emerson made
up for his absence. This week Capello preferred the awful Assuncao to Nakata
and Emerson struggled playing his third match in a week following return
from injury. Zago handled Vugrinec's cross in the box. No penalty and
Lucarelli earned himself a yellow card for protesting. Roma almost scored
immediately thereafter, Montella hitting the post after Chimenti spilled
Samuel got on the end of Candela's free kick to steal the three points. He
followed that up by pulling down Lucarelli in the box, as blatant a piece of
shirt pulling you are ever likely to see, again no penalty.
Italian TV will hammer Messina for his performance and I will not be surprised
if the Italian FA call him up to explain his 'decisions' and then give him a
ban. He was well placed on both occasions so it will be interesting to hear
Attendance : 58,000
Assist : Candela
17 FEBRUARY 2001
UDINESE 2-1 VERONA
Fiore 40 Oddo 80 (Pen)
Fiore ran through a defender to get on the end of Sosa's knockdown and lashed
the ball into the corner. Fiore then turned provider, finding Diaz with a
raking cross and the Argentinean curled a shot into the top corner. Verona
were gifted a penalty when Bonazzoli fell in the box, I don't think he was
looking for a penalty, he just lost his balance. Oddo converted.
Assists : Fiore, Bonazzoli
MILAN 3-3 BOLOGNA
Shevchenko 24, 32 Cipriani 55, 77
Sala 92 Signori 80
Abbiati was fortunate to get away with poor handling on a free kick and shot
from distance. Shevchenko scored his first with a weak effort from outside
the box, how Pagliuca managed to miss it remains a mystery. Leonardo smashed
a free kick against the post and then combined with Ba (remember him?) to
give Shevchenko a tap-in. Maldini tangled with Cipriani in the box, 50-50
challenge but when the defender starts the shirt pulling he's asking for
trouble. Abbiati made a fantastic save from Maresca's spot kick and that
should have been game, set and match.
Milan reject Locatelli lifted the ball over a packed Milan defence, Cipriani
hammered a half volley past Abbiati. The 20 year old striker, making his
Round A debut, easily got above Maldini to head Bologna level and then broke
down in tears. Bad defending and a lucky deflection off Cipriani gave Signori
his first goal in months. Helveg launched a high free kick into the box,
Olive made a poor attempt at a clearance and Sala lashed the ball into the
Zaccheroni, the coach with nine lives, survives again.
Assists : Comandini, Ba, Locatelli, Signori, Cipriani