Inter were awarded their first penalty of the campaign and Diego Milito saw it saved by Gianluca Curci. They hadn’t received a spot-kick for 33 rounds, since a 3-1 home defeat to Lazio on May 8 2013, when Ricky Alvarez also failed to convert. The last penalty Inter scored in Serie A was by Alvarez in a 3-1 defeat at Napoli on May 5 2013. Milito hadn’t missed a Serie A penalty since Inter 0-0 Atalanta on March 18 2012, firing in the next seven on the trot.
Bologna hadn’t scored from open play since February 9. That was eight games and 820 minutes of football ago, converting two penalties in that time. Jonathan Cristaldo went up to four in his debut campaign, while Panagiotis Kone scored against Inter both home and away this season. The Rossoblu had won their previous two trips to San Siro, winning 3-0 and 1-0. Davide Ballardini’s side have one victory from the last nine rounds, drawing three and losing five.
The last time Inter notched up 14 draws in a single season was in 2004-05 when Roberto Mancini’s side got 18. This term Inter and Bologna have more draws than any other side, as the Rossoblu have 12. For the eighth time this campaign, the Nerazzurri were pegged back to a draw despite taking the lead. Mauro Icardi bagged his first brace for the club and now has 16 Serie A goals.
Mattia Destro scored his first Serie A hat-trick and now has 33 goals in the top flight. He has found the net on average once every 85 minutes this season, six times in the last seven games. The last Roma player to bag a treble was Daniel Osvaldo in a 4-0 win over Siena on April 28 2013.
Roma hadn’t won on Sardinian soil since a 2-0 result in 1995, followed by four draws and seven defeats. Last season they were awarded a 3-0 victory after the game was cancelled due to security fears.
Cagliari have lost four of the last five rounds and decided to sack Coach Diego Lopez. Mauricio Pinilla took his career total to 31 Serie A goals thanks to his third in five meetings with the Giallorossi.
Parma hadn’t done the League Double over Napoli since 1997-98, winning 4-0 at the San Paolo and 3-1 in the reverse fixture. The Azzurri’s last defeat at the Tardini was 4-0 in 2001, followed by four victories and a stalemate. These teams have faced off 30 times in Serie A and never played a 0-0 draw. Rafa Benitez’s men hadn’t lost or fired blanks on their travels since a 3-0 to Atalanta on February 2, putting together three wins and a draw.
The Ducali had been without a success since their 4-2 at Milan on March 16, managing one draw and three consecutive defeats. However, their home run was extended to four wins and six stalemates. Marco Parolo got his eighth goal of the season, but three of his total 17 have been against favourite targets Napoli.
Juventus equal Torino’s 1947-48 all-time Serie A record with their 16th consecutive home win and have scored in each of their last 28 Turin League fixtures for a total 65 goals. Fernando Llorente bagged his second Serie A brace after the one in a 4-1 win over Cagliari on January 12 and seven of his 13 goals this season were headers, more than any other player in this tournament. However, before this game Livorno had conceded only two headed goals all term.
A 3-2 result in Turin in 1942 was the only time Livorno have beaten Juve, home or away, in their last 21 top flight encounters. The rest of the run was made up of four draws and 16 defeats. The Amaranto haven’t kept a clean sheet for 21 official matches, leaking 44 goals.
Atalanta’s club record terminated at six consecutive Serie A victories, but they had been unbeaten and on target since a 4-0 home defeat to Parma on February 16, keeping a clean sheet for 266 minutes of football. Sassuolo did the double over the Orobici, also winning earlier this season. Their only other away victory was 4-3 at Sampdoria on November 3, followed by three points from nine games, and this was their fourth clean sheet of the season. Nicola Sansone went up to 12 Serie A goals with his second brace, the other netted for Parma in December against Inter.
Milan are unbeaten at Marassi since a 1-0 result in 2010, earning three wins and a draw. They haven’t lost to Genoa, home or away, in eight meetings thanks to six successes and two stalemates. For the first time this season, the Rossoneri notched up three consecutive victories. Genoa have lost four of the last six rounds, winning once.
Adel Taarabt has scored three Serie A goals, all of them away from home and two at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris, as he also netted against Sampdoria on February 23. Keisuke Honda marked his debut Serie A strike at the 12th appearance, meaning for the first time both Inter (with Yuto Nagatomo) and Milan have Japanese goalscorers in the same season. It also means the Rossoneri and Roma have found the net with 17 different players this term.
Fiorentina notched up their seventh consecutive home win against Udinese between League and Coppa. The Friulani had conceded only two goals in the previous five rounds before leaking two in Florence. Juan Guillermo Cuadrado set a new personal best of six goals in a single season, 14 overall in Serie A, while Gonzalo Rodriguez took his career total to nine and Bruno Fernandes four. Danilo marked his 100th Serie A appearance.
Lazio won two on the bounce, something they had only achieved once before this season. The Biancocelesti played 12 early Sunday games and scored in all of them. Antonio Candreva found the net for the second game running and has 25 in the top flight now. Senad Lulic set a new personal best with his fifth of the campaign, 10 overall in Serie A. Sampdoria haven’t won a League game away to Lazio since 2005, following that 2-1 result with one draw and seven defeats, scoring just twice.
Catania fell to a fifth consecutive defeat, earning one point from eight rounds, and will need a miracle to avoid relegation. The Elefantini hadn’t lost three home games in a row in Serie A since February 2009. Gonzalo Bergessio rose to 31 top flight goals, while Giuseppe Bellusci marked his 100th Serie A appearance.
Torino curtailed a run of three away losses on the bounce and have picked up an extra 13 points from trailing situations. Alexander Farnerud has three goals in his maiden Serie A season, while Ciro Immobile went up to 23 overall, scoring five in the last three rounds.
Luca Toni becomes the all-time top scorer for Verona in a single Serie A campaign with 16, surpassing Gianni Bui from 1968-69 and Nico Penzo in 1982-83. It’s his 125th career strike in the Italian top flight, two shy of Andriy Shevchenko’s tally.
Chievo have lost four of the last five games. The only other time Hellas Verona had won the ‘away’ derby was 2-1 in 1995, along with four defeats between Serie A and B. For the first time in 2014, the Scaligeri kept an ‘away’ clean sheet after conceding 13 goals in seven games.
Think you know your Italian football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition - £5,000 monthly.