The weekend in Italy
A huge weekend for Italian football turned out to be another rather dull few days of this season’s Serie A.
Italian football has come on leaps and bounds entertainment-wise in the last decade from the squalid mess of negativity that plagued the 90s. However, any newcomers this season will leave quicker than Marcello Lippi’s men in South Africa. The 10 games featured just 17 goals – seven of which came from Palermo and Udinese alone – seven less than the Premier League.
The biggest match of the round was the Milan derby where AC Milan beat Internazionale 1-0. Turn on a little late and you could have missed the only thing of any note other than Ignazio Abate’s sending off. Ex-Inter man Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored the only goal in the fifth minute from a penalty. The goal was one of just three shots on target all night, but it was enough to kill of an utterly toothless Inter. Massimo Moratti claimed he “didn’t like anything, it will be hard to go on like this.” Whether this means he’s questioning Benitez’s future or considering some signings in January, things aren’t presently looking great for the former Liverpool manager. He possesses none of Mourinho’s injury-free luck, facing Milan without Julio Cesar, Walter Samuel, Maicon, Thiago Motta and Esteban Cambiasso.
The other major game of the weekend was Roma’s 1-1 draw with Juventus. Alberto Aquilani continued his excellent form against his old team, setting up Iaquinta for an excellent volley, before Francesco Totti clawed one back from the penalty spot. Both teams had to settle for a draw from what was an interesting tactical battle, though far from a classic.
Elsewhere, Edoardo Reja got his Lazio team back on track with a 2-0 win over his old team Napoli with goals from Mauro Zarate and Stefano Floccari and Palermo won the Sicilian derby over Catania 3-1 thanks to a Javier Pastore hat-trick.
Fiorentina 1-0 Cesena
Cagliari 0-1 Genoa
Sampdoria 0-0 Chievo
Bari 0-1 Parma
Bologna 1-0 Brescia