Robinho downs Juve
Milan picked up an important victory and did their city rivals Inter a favour by beating Juventus 1-0 at the San Siro last night.
A Robinho penalty decided the game in the Rossoneri’s favour as Juve were beaten for only the second time this season.
Juve could have gone seven points clear with a win, but remain just four ahead of surprise package Fiorentina and Inter.
Both teams had 90 minutes of Champions League football during the week, yet while Milan were in a more comfortable situation for their game against Anderlecht, Juve were under immense pressure to beat Chelsea.
That seemed to take their edge away and they were unable to create even a single opening in the first 45 minutes.
Milan created only a few more, but tellingly got the ball into the penalty area more often and received their reward when a penalty was given for handball against Mauricio Isla.
Robinho took responsibility from the spot and, although Gianluigi Buffon got both hands to the ball, he was unable to keep it out.
Buffon almost gifted Stephan El Shaarawy a second early in the second half, but Andrea Barzagli spared his goalkeeper’s blushes with a brave sliding tackle to send the loose ball away from the Italy international.
Juve’s reaction arrived when Sebastian Giovinco came on to replace Fabio Quagliarella.
His first action was a spectacular overhead kick attempt from eight yards with the ball flying wide.
Milan were far more defensive in the second half, yet they had a good chance to double their lead when Mario Yepes’s header from a corner was saved by Buffon.
Juve pushed and pushed for an equaliser but as the rain grew in intensity, their hopes became damper and damper as the hosts held on.
In the afternoon, Mounir El Hamdaoui came off the bench to score a late equaliser for Fioren-tina at Torino, with a 2-2 draw enough to lift the Tuscans up to joint-second in the table.
Torino looked a threat from the off, while Fiorentina struggled to find any creative outlet from a sluggish forward line.
The hosts took the lead five minutes from the break after Alessio Cerci got himself on the end of a low Danilo D’Ambrosio cross, with Riccardo Meggiorini’s dummy fooling the Fiorentina defence.
Fiorentina came alive in the second half, but with talisman Stevan Jovetic still out injured and Luca Toni in the treatment room, Torino were able to weather the storm.
The visitors drew level from the penalty spot in the 74th minute after D’Ambrosio upended Juan Guillermo Cuadrado, with Gonzalo Rodriguez converting.
However, just a minute later Torino were back in front, Valter Birsa’s cross shot tricking everyone and ending up in the net.
Former Ajax striker El Hamdaoui equalised with pretty much his first touch of the game, turning and shooting in one movement, hitting an angled shot past Jean-Francois Gillet.
Elsewhere, Mattia Destro scored only his second goal for Roma since arriving from Genoa during the close season, helping the Giallorossi to a 1-0 win at Pescara, a win that sees the capital club up to joint-fifth in the table.
The big shock of the day was Genoa’s 1-0 win at Atalanta thanks to Andrea Bertolacci’s first-half goal for the lowly visitors.
Fellow strugglers Siena drew 0-0 at Chievo.
Today, Cagliari host Napoli and Parma are at home to Inter who will be hoping to reclaim second spot outright and close with gap with Juve.
HT: 0-1. Att: 14,166.
Red card: Moretti (G) 86.
Red card: Samassa (C) 86.
Robinho 31 pen;
HT: 1-0. Att: 67,023.
HT: 0-1. Att: 18,000.
HT: 0-0. Att: 21,624.
Red card: Morleo (B) 5.
Cerci 40; Birsa 76;
Rodriguez 74 pen; El Hamdaoui 84;
HT: 1-0. Att: 15,000.
Cagliari vs Napoli - 19.00
Parma vs Inter - 21.00
Lazio vs Udinese - 20.45
10 goals: El Shaarawy (Milan).
8 goals: Cavani (Napoli), Lamela (Roma), Di Natale (Udinese).
7 goals: Milito (Inter), Klose (Lazio), Osvaldo (Roma).
Friday: 20.45 Catania vs Milan.
Saturday: 20.45 Juventus vs Torino.
Sunday: 12.30 Napoli vs Pescara. 15.00 Bologna vs Atalanta; Genoa vs Chievo; Inter vs Palermo; Lazio vs Parma; Siena vs Roma; Udinese vs Cagliari. 20.45 Fiorentina vs Samp.
Bari vs Modena - 2-0
Prima Divisione ‘A’
Carpi vs FeralpiSalo 3-0; Como vs Cuneo 1-4; Lecce vs Reggiana 2-1; Pavia vs Trapani 2-2; Portogruaro vs AlbinoLeffe 1-4; SudTirol vs Cremonese 1-0; Tritium vs Treviso 2-0.
Leading standings: Lecce 29; Carpi 24; SudTirol 21; Trapani 19; Entella, Pavia 18.
Prima Divisione ‘B’
Carrarese vs Gubbio 2-2.
Leading standings: Pisa 22; Frosinone, Latina 20; Avellino 19; Gubbio, Paganese 18; Nocerina 17.