Lazio gain ground as leaders stumble
AC Milan missed the chance to go six points clear at the top of the Serie A table after a 1-1 draw at struggling Lecce. Zlatan Ibrahimovic struck the opener for Milan four minutes after half-time, scoring with a wonderful lob from 30 yards after a quick break, but Ruben Olivera equalised with eight minutes to go.
But after the Swede played another starring role, coach Massimiliano Allegri denied his team is over-reliant on Ibrahimovic. "We're just trying to exploit Ibra's immense quality. What he did today was a thing of extraordinary beauty," he said. "I'm sorry we dropped points, we conceded a goal in the only way we could lose one.
"In the first half we didn't create much but in the second, after the goal, we played well and had many chances. We've still got a four-point lead, there's a long way to go but after this draw we need to be calm because the players are in good shape."
The result leaves them four points clear of Napoli, who drew with Fiorentina last night, and Lazio, who gained their first win of 2011 thanks to a late goal from substitute Libor Kozak against Sampdoria.
The match at the Stadio Olimpico looked headed for a goalless draw until the Czech Republic forward popped up to score the winner six minutes from time.Kozak came off the bench and met Cristian Ledesma's cross with a powerful header to give Lazio all three points.
Alberto Aquilani scored a terrific later winner as Juventus arrested a run of three games without a win with a 2-1 success over Bari. The on-loan Liverpool midfielder drove home from the edge of the box with 11 minutes remaining to condemn rock bottom Bari to another defeat. The evergreen Alessandro Del Piero had given Juve a first-half lead, only for Gergely Rudolf to level shortly after the break.
A late own goal by Maximiliano Pellegrino handed Roma a narrow 1-0 victory at Cesena. The luckless defender stuck out a foot in the hope of clearing Fabio Simplicio's close-range effort but poked the ball into the back of his own net. Seconds earlier, Roma substitute Marco Borriello had struck the crossbar.
Udinese continue scoring streak
Udinese continued their excellent run of form with a convincing 4-2 win at Genoa. For the second game in a row, the Bianconeri scored four goals on the road, although this time they were rewarded with all three points.
Pablo Armero put them ahead in the 27th minute but Omar Milanetto levelled for the hosts in first-half stoppage time. Antonio Di Natale put Udinese back in front in the 56th minute only for Mattia Destro to respond just a minute later. Alexi Sanchez and German Denis added two further goals for Francesco Guidolin's side as they deservedly took all three points at the Stadio Luigi Ferrrais.
Goals from Francesco Bega and Alessandro Diamanti gave struggling Brescia a comfortable 2-0 win over ten-man Parma. The dismissal of Massimo Paci inside half an hour left Parma on the back foot and Bega broke the deadlock in style in first-half injury time. Parma's best chance went begging when no attacker could meet Antonio Candreva's cross and Diamanti's well-taken late effort made the result safe.
Palermo stumble at Cagliari
Cagliari lifted themselves into the top half of the table thanks to a 3-1 win over Palermo. Alessandro Matri put the hosts in front in the 23rd minute before an own goal by Antonio Nocerino early in the second half gave them a two-goal cushion. Javier Pastore reduced the arrears within minutes, but Davide Biondini sealed the win for Roberto Donadoni's side shortly afterwards.
Catania and Chievo failed to put significant distance between themselves and the relegation zone as they played out an entertaining 1-1 draw at Stadio Angelo Massimino. Maxi Lopez fired the hosts ahead from the penalty spot after 29 minutes but a Sergio Pellissier strike 20 minutes into the second period ensured the points were shared.