Kaka keeps up pressure on Inter

AC Milan closed to within a point of Serie A leaders Inter Milan with a 1-0 victory over struggling Chievo today. Reigning FIFA World Player of the Year Kaka scored the only goal from a penalty, which he won himself after a pass from Ronaldinho. 

Although Carlo Ancelotti's side dominated he rest of the game, they failed to find a way through against the team that now props up the division. The result left the Serie A table with a familiar feel to it, with I Rossoneri second between Inter and Juventus, who beat Palermo 2-0 and Genoa 4-1 respectively yesterday.

Things did not go so well for other potential title challengers today, though, with Napoli, Udinese and Fiorentina all losing. The former finished the game with ten men in a 3-1 defeat at Atalanta.

Brazilian Ferreira Pinto gave the hosts a 62nd-minute lead, and four minutes later Napoli's Uruguayan striker Marcelo Zalayeta was sent off for his second booking. However, Thomas Manfredini was penalised for bringing down Ezequiel Lavezza in the box, and Slovakian playmaker Marek Hamsik kept his cool to score from the spot and level the scores on 73 minutes.

Napoli looked set to hold on for a point until Manfredini made up for his earlier error by thumping home a free-kick, via a wicked deflection, a minute from time. Sergio Floccari then tapped home a cross from Ferreira Pinto in injury time to add insult to the visitors' injuries.

Udinese's UEFA Champions League qualification hopes suffered as they lost for the second match in a row, this time 1-0 at home to previous tailenders. The hosts may have dominated possession, but Reggina created more chances and Franco Brienza scored the only goal on the hour.

Udinese are now six points behind Inter, with Fiorentina a further point back after they lost 1-0 at Cagliari. Italy U-21 star Robert Acquafresca scored the winner from the spot on 31 minutes, after defender Alessandro Gamberini was penalised for a foul.