3 May 2009

MILAN 2 (Inzaghi 27, Kaka' 52)

The pouring rain failed to dampen what was another marvellous performance by a Milan side playing their best football since last winning Serie A back in 2004. Despite being marked by two defenders, Inzaghi managed to find space between them to collect a Kaka' centre and poke the ball wide of Kosicky. Kaka' tapped in his 15th of the season after Beckham forced a save from Kosicky. Inzaghi should have scored a second half hat-trick and Kaka' hit the outside of a post with an absolutely gorgeous curling shot.

Attendance : 20,000
Assists : Kaka', n/a

FIORENTINA 1 (Vargas 57)

The match was preceded by a minute's silence to mark the 60th anniversary of the Superga disaster which claimed the lives of what is considered the greatest Italian club side of all time, Il Grande Torino, a tragedy from which the club have never recovered in fact most of their records still stand today. Vargas' hot streak continued and he took advantage of a mistakes by Colombo and Sereni to hit the winner and maintain what is shaping upto be a fierce battle with Genoa for fourth place. Sereni was sent off for handling outside his area.

Attendance : 31,218
Red Card : Sereni 92 (Torino)
Assist : Kuzmanovic

JUVENTUS 2 (Nedved 54, Nedved 66)
LECCE 2 (Konan 11, Castillo 94)

Juve's defence has crumbled in recent weeks. It took four men to push-up and play Tiribocchi offside 30 yards from goal only they didn't notice Konan making a run down the left flank, which has become their achilles heels, onto Giacomazzi's pass and he had all the time in the World to pick his spot and beat the increasingly beleaguered Buffon. Nedved turned the game on it's head in a 12 minute spell mid-way through the second half. Amauri laid off a Iaquinta centre and the Czech's trusty left foot found the bottom right corner. His second goal followed a shot from a poor angle which butterfingers Benussi should have saved. The old Juve would have went on to see the game out comfortably but Ranieri's team crumbled. Buffon produced fantastic saves to deny Fabiano and Tiribocchi but was beaten in the last seconds of injury time when Castillo lost his marker to head in a deflected cross.

Attendance : 11,000
Assists : Giacomazzi, Amauri, Marchionni, n/a

PALERMO 5 (Migliaccio 29, Miccoli 38 fk, Tedesco 50, Cavani 57, Succi 87)
CAGLIARI 1 (Jeda 48)

Palermo hit the woodwork twice before Migliaccio volleyed them into the lead from a Miccoli corner. Palermo coach Ballardini was sent off following what was even by Italian standards a bizarre incident. Matheu fouled Miccoli and as he ran past the Palermo bench Ballardini wrestled him to the ground and admonished him as you would a child. Palermo were awarded a free kick so far away from goal even the cameraman couldn't get Miccoli in shot as he panned to a wide view of the box. His decision was vindicated as seconds later the ball suddenly appeared as it tore the top left corner of Marchetti's net. Jeda once again belied his lack of height to score a fantastic head goal but Tedesco quickly reasserted Palermo's authority with a brave diving header. The Palermo players celebrated by holding aloft a shirt for disgraced team-mate Moris Carrozzieri who tested positive for coke early last month. Cagliari defender Astori helped Cavani get on the scoresheet by smacking a loose ball against him, it bounced off him and into an empty net. A wonderfully constructed passing move which started with Cavani playing a double one-two on the left flank saw the ball working over to the centre and Liverani shredded two Cagliari defenders with a perfectly weighted through pass and as the hapless Marchetti advanced off his line Succi beat him with first time shot through his legs.

Ballardini is doing a fantastic job. Palermo are a joy to watch in stark contrast to some of the rubbish they played under Guidolin. There's a good mix of youth and experience in this side.

Attendance : 27,847
Red Card : Ballardini 33 (Palermo)
Assists : Miccoli (ck), Liverani (won fk), Fini, Simplicio, n/a, Liverani


Attendance : 30,000
Red Card : Pinzi 93 (Chievo)
Assists : n/a

SIENA 2 (Kharja 11, Maccarone 25)
NAPOLI 1 (Pia 80)

On 11 minutes Siena's Moroccan midfielder scored one of the goals of the season. Running onto a Curic throw out (it's so refreshing to see a 'keeper pass the ball instead of aimlessly launching a goalkick) Kharja received possession 70 yards from goal, shook off a player on the half way line, nutmegged another on the centre circle, continued his run forward and from the edge of the box sent a left foot shot screaming into the roof of the net. Maccarone slammed in his 8th goal of the season from Zuniga's centre. I'm not sure why Curci was substituted but his replacement, Manitta, was beaten by one of the few shots Napoli mustered in what was overall a dreadful performance when Pia headed in Datalo's free kick.

Attendance : 9,000
Assists : Curci, Zuniga, Datalo (fk)

UDINESE 3 (Quagliarella 43, Quagliarella 74, Pasquale 90)

Four Atalanta hands went up when defending a free kick and Quagliarella punished their stupidity with the opener. Asamoah was tackled on the edge of the box and Manfredini made a pig's ear of the clearance, as he waited for Consigli to come off line and claim the ball Quagliarella snuck up from behind and helped himself to another goal. Four minutes later he conned the ref into showing Bellini a soft second yellow card. Pasquale and Floro Flores exchanged passes and the defender strode through to score as the Atalanta defence once again tried and failed to play offside.

Attendance : 10,000
Red Card : Bellini 78 (Atalanta)
Assists : n/a, n/a, Floro Flores

GENOA 3 (Milito 30, Milito 73, Milito 93)
SAMPDORIA 1 (Campagnaro 48)

Samp dominated the opening half hour but paid the price for some spectacularly poor finishing. Milito drew a great save from Castelazzi and from the resulting corner poked the ball over the line after Biava flicked on Juric's cross. Palombo's speculative shot took a deflection off a Genoa player and Campagnaro recovered from a poor first touch to equalise. Sammarco should have put Samp in the lead from a Cassano free kick but blazed over from 12 yards. Criscito closed down Delvecchio as he attempted to play a ball out of defence and once again the bounce was kind to the home side and Milito stepped into the ball before thumping a left foot side past Castelazzi. Ferrari was shown a second yellow for raising his hands to Dossena as they challenged for a 50-50 ball in the box. Four minutes later Motta jumped into Pazzini with a stiff shoulder, Pazzini inadvertently tripped the Brazilian as he fell and Campagnaro arrived on the scene to try and bring Motta to his feet. Somewhere in this mess Genoa's goalkeeper Rubinho was flattened. The ref justifiably sent off Motta and unjustifiably sent off Campagnaro. As Samp poured forward in search on an equaliser they were hit on the break. A Genoa player stormed out of defence and floored Palladino? with a crunching tackle which left both players on the turf, another Genoa player broke from defence, jumped over a tackle and sent Padalino in acres of space down the right with Milito running in support, the former Juve striker drew out Castelazzi and unselfishly centred for Milito to score his second Serie A hat-trick.

Attendance : 32,000
Red Cards : Ferrari 86 (Genoa), Motta 90 (Genoa), Campagnaro 90 (Sampdoria)
Assists : Biava, n/a, Criscito, Palladino

2 May 2009

BOLOGNA 1 (Moras 87)
REGGINA 2 (Brienza 40, Barreto 46)

Brienza took advantage of Bologna's poorly executed offside trap to open the scoring. Barreto, who played in Brienza for Reggina's opening goal, doubled his side lead with an absolute thunderbolt. He controlled a loose ball on his chest and hit a glorious half volley which arced through the air before dipping under the crossbar. Reggina's Coelho suffered a sickening injury after crashing hard to the ground, his eyes rolled up into his head as he lay almost motionless. Admittedly he has only himself to blame as he fell after driving his head into Costa's back when trying to attack a ball he never had a prayer of reaching. Bologna hit the woodwork twice before Moras pulled a goal back from a corner.

No news on Coelho which suggests he must be ok.

Attendance : 18,300
Assists : Barreto, n/a, Belleri (ck)

INTER 2 (Ibrahimovic 58, Muntari 70)

Ibrahimovic kept Inter on course for a third successive scudetto and what will be his six successive first place finish (one at Ajax, two at Juve) which is obviously an incredible achievement. He dribbled into the box and beat Muslera with a powerfully struck low drive which swerved inside the right post. A perfectly weighted through ball took out four Lazio players leaving Muntari with an easy finish.

Attendance : 58,576
Assists : Muntari, Ibrahimovic