Serie A - Round-up: Milan draw 4-4 with Udinese

Sun, 09 Jan 16:41:00 2011

Leaders AC Milan drew 4-4 with Udinese in an epic San Siro encounter on Sunday while second-placed Lazio were beaten at home as the Serie A title race took a fresh twist at the midway point of the season.

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Lazio went down 2-1 to lowly Lecce but champions Internazionale, now 11 points adrift of Milan, won 2-1 at Catania thanks to Esteban Cambiasso's double to boost their outside hopes of a sixth successive scudetto given they have two games in hand.

Napoli, currently third, host fifth-placed Juventus in the late game knowing victory will cut Milan's lead to four points.

Udinese took the lead on 35 minutes when Gokhan Inler's shot hit the post and an onside Antonio Di Natale, the league's top scorer, netted the rebound amid futile Milan protests.

The hosts hit back just before the break when the returning Zlatan Ibrahimovic crossed for Alexandre Pato to tap in his first goal since being hurt in November.

Udinese forward Alexis Sanchez, linked in the media with Inter, headed in at the near post after halftime and Di Natale scored his second before an own goal by Mehdi Benatia and Pato's second after Antonio Cassano's assist put the hosts level.

German Denis thought he had won it for Udinese a minute from time but Ibrahimovic struck an injury-time equaliser after another sublime pass from new signing Cassano had the San Siro faithful jumping for joy.

Lazio went behind in unfortunate fashion when Jeda's shot struck the post and hit goalkeeper Fernando Muslera on the back to fly into the net but captain Stefano Mauri equalised from close range straight after the break despite looking offside.

Lecce grabbed the win through Carlos Grossmuller in the 74th.

Inter were second best to Catania for long periods in Leonardo's second game in charge but two second-half goals by Argentina midfielder Cambiasso, the second a towering header, sealed the win after Alejandro Gomez's opener.

Sampdoria were gifted a 2-1 win over AS Roma when errors from defender Juan contributed to both goals but sixth-placed Palermo could not take advantage with a 0-0 draw at Chievo.

Fourth-placed Roma, who took the lead in the first period thanks to a powerful run and shot from Mirko Vucinic, looked comfortable until substitute Juan underhit a backpass and compatriot Julio Sergio could only bring down Angelo Palombo.

The goalkeeper was dismissed without protest and Nicola Pozzi blasted in the resulting penalty before Juan failed to clear a ball in the box and former Roma winger Stefano Guberti nipped in to score an 84th-minute winner.

The pressure on Fiorentina coach Sinisa Mihajlovic was eased after the struggling Florence side, without banished striker Adrian Mutu, fought back for a 3-2 home win over lowly Brescia.

A string of Serie A sides are showing wild swings of inconsistency and Parma followed up Thursday's 4-1 win at Juve with a 2-1 home defeat by Cagliari while Genoa looked toothless without new Juve signing Luca Toni in a 0-0 draw at Cesena.

Bottom side Bari lost 2-0 at home to improving Bologna.

Reuters

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