Serie A: Roma beat Milan to keep title hopes alive

Roma have delayed Juventus’ Scudetto celebrations for at least one more week after defeating A.C. Milan 2-0.

 

Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

 

Roma clinched a 2-0 win against A.C. Milan to claim their ninth straight victory, keeping their slim chance of stealing the Scudetto alive.

 

Roma dominated the opening 40 minutes, but were unable to create any clear cut chances, with long distance efforts from Dodô and Daniele De Rossi the best chances of the half.

 

That was until Miralem Pjanić went on a superb solo run in the 43rd minute, taking on Sulley Muntari, Riccardo Montolivo and Adil Rami before calmly slotting past Christian Abbiati.

 

Early in the second half, Milan had a chance to equalise when Ricardo Kaká picked out Montolivo at the top of the penalty box, but the Milan captain sprayed his shot wide.

 

In the 53rd minute, a free kick variation from Francesco Totti saw him play a short ball to Pjanić, but the Bosnian shot straight at Abbiati.

 

Roma got their second goal in the 65th minute, when Adem Ljajić slipped through Totti, who fired straight at Abbiati, but the keeper parried the ball into the path of Gervinho, leaving the Ivorian with the simple task of tapping into an open net.

 

Milan pushed for a goal of their own in the dying stages, with two opportunities falling to Adel Taarabt, but the Moroccan was unable to find the back of the net.

 

Roma remain eight points behind Juventus, which means they will require the league leaders to lose all three of their remaining games in order to have any chance of winning the title.

 

Milan’s loss marks the end of their five-match winning streak, and they have now slipped down into 10th position.

 

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Juventus have one hand on the title after defeating Sassuolo 3-1 away from home, meaning a win next week against Atalanta will earn the league leaders their third consecutive Scudetto.

 

Juventus-owned striker Simone Zaza opened the scoring for Sassuolo after just nine minutes, but a deflected effort from Carlos Tevez put Juventus back on level terms in the 35th minute.

 

Claudio Marchisio latched onto an Andrea Pirlo chip through ball in the 58th minute to give Juventus the lead, before Fernando Llorente sealed the result in the 76th minute with an audacious backheel.

 

At the San Siro, Inter Milan – who are currently in the fifth position – and third-placed Napoli played out a goalless draw.

 

The result means Napoli are just one win away from sealing third place, while Inter are close to securing their place in the Europa League.

 

Fiorentina cruised to a 3-0 away win against Bologna to keep their Champions League dreams alive.

 

A Juan Cuadrado brace and a goal from Josip Iličić helped Fiorentina move within eight points of Napoli, while Bologna remain in the bottom three.

 

Torino rocketed into sixth position with a 2-0 win against Udinese, thanks to goals from Omar El-Kaddouri and league top scorer Ciro Immobile.

 

Lazio, on level points with Torino, moved into seventh place after beating Livorno 2-0 away, with Stefano Mauri and Antonio Candreva getting on the scoresheet for the visitors.

 

Like Torino and Lazio, Hellas Verona are also on 52 points after easing past bottom-placed Catania 4-0, keeping their Europa League ambitions alive.

 

After going 17 matches unbeaten, Parma suffered their fourth defeat in six matches to continue their slide down the table, losing 1-0 to Cagliari.

 

In other results, Sampdoria came from behind to beat Chievo Verona 2-1, while Atalanta and Genoa drew 1-1.

 

Written by Marco Balsamo – @mbalsamo10

 

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