Serie A - Lavezzi wins it for Napoli

Sun, 04 Mar 13:33:00 2012

Ezequiel Lavezzi's late strike snatched all three Serie A points for Napoli as they beat Parma 2-1 at the Stadio Ennio Tardini.

Napoli Parma Lavezzi Cavani - 0

The visitors took the lead at the end of the first-half when Gianluca Musacci was controversially adjudged to have brought down Edinson Cavani in the box and the Uruguayan dusted himself down to take the penalty. Antonio Mirante saved the spot kick, but Cavani scored from the rebound.

The home side levelled in the 77th minute when Cristian Zaccardo netted from close range after Morgan De Sanctis had made a good save from Gabriel Paletta.

It looked like the momentum was with Parma but in the 86th minute, Cavani received the ball on the edge of the box and played in Lavezzi who fired across goal to score with a clinical finish.

The victory for Napoli keeps up the pressure on fourth place Lazio, and means they continue to be in contention for Champions League qualification.

The home side started the brighter with Daniele Galloppa stinging the hands of De Sanctis with a shot from outside the box within the opening minute.

Sebastian Giovinco was pulling the strings for Parma, showing several neat touches and looking a threat down the left side.

But it was the visitors that had the first real chance in the 18th minute as Andrea Dossena attacked down the left and played a dangerous low cross across goal for Cavani to tuck the ball away before the referee pulled the play back for offside.

Marek Hamsik then played in Cavani to tee up Lavezzi but he could only curl his shot past the post.

Giovinco was starting to cause some real problems for Napoli and in the 30th minute he was played in with a long ball over the top. The playmaker had time to stop and pick out Galloppa who lost his balance and scuffed his shot over the bar.

Then Cavani went down in the box under an apparent challenge from Musacci and referee Paolo Valeri pointed to the spot. Musacci will feel hard done by, as replays showed he did not touch the Uruguayan striker, and his team were behind at the break.

Parma started the second-half brightly, and should have been awarded a penalty themselves just three minutes in, when the referee failed to spot a handball from Dossena.

McDonald Mariga went close in the 56th minute when Jonathan Biabiany teed up the Kenyan who fired over the bar.

Stefano Okaka and Jaime Valdes also went close for Parma with the latter testing De Sanctis from long range in the 67th minute before Parma finally got the equaliser they deserved in the 77th minute when Zaccardo pounced.

But there was still time for Lavezzi to be the match winner.

Richard Newman / Eurosport

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