Sunday September 22 2013
Serie A Week 4: Did You Know?

Napoli, Milan and Inter made history, Mario Balotelli paid the penalty and Roma ended a derby winless streak as Susy Campanale has the Week 4 curiosities.

Napoli earned their first victory at San Siro since a 2-1 result in April 1986, when Diego Armando Maradona was on the scoresheet, followed by nine draws and 10 defeats. Milan were unbeaten on home turf in Serie A since Fiorentina’s 3-1 result on November 11 2012, ending a run of 11 victories and two stalemates.

Mario Balotelli failed to convert a penalty for the first time in his professional career, having netted 22 times. SuperMario had previously converted all 10 Serie A spot-kicks. He still scored for the third round on the bounce, taking his total to 35 Serie A goals, but confirmed his status as losing all four games against Napoli played for Inter, Manchester City and Milan.

Miguel Angel Britos’ last Serie A goal was in Napoli 2-0 Chievo on February 13 2012, taking his tally up to six. Gonzalo Higuain has found the net in his last three Serie A games.

Roma had not been top of the table in Week 4 since 2007-08 and keep a 100 per cent record for only the third time in their history after 1952-53 and 1960-61.

The Lupi won a derby after four defeats and a draw between Serie A and Coppa Italia. With the Giallorossi as the ‘home’ side, they’ve won 31, drawn 33 and lost 16. This was the first Serie A Derby della Capitale to be played in September. There were some in the Coppa Italia, resulting in five Roma wins and a draw with the Biancocelesti failing to find the net.

Federico Balzaretti had not scored since Palermo 2-1 Napoli in April 2011. Lazio have not scored in four of the last six ‘away’ derbies. Andre Dias became the 16th player to be sent off in the last 11 Serie A Rome derbies (nine for Lazio, seven Roma). Curiously, all 10 of Roma’s goals this season have come after the break, so the team earned an extra nine points by improving their result in the second half.

Sassuolo have the worst defensive record for 80 years, conceding 15 goals in the opening four rounds. Only Casale leaked more with 16 in 1933-34. The last club to make its Serie A debut was Treviso in 2005-06 and they too had zero points after four games. Sassuolo hadn’t lost four on the bounce since March 2010 in Serie B.

Inter earned their biggest ever Serie A away victory and had not been 3-0 up at the break in this competition since January 2012 against Parma. There have been another two 7-0 away wins in Serie A, Juventus at Pro Patria on September 10 1950 and Udinese in Palermo on February 27 2011. The overall record is 8-0, achieved in Venezia-Padova on November 20 1949 and Genoa-Milan on June 5 1955.

Diego Milito scored on his comeback after seven months, as his last goal had been in a 3-1 win over Chievo on February 10. Il Principe hadn’t bagged a brace since a 3-1 away to Juventus in November 2012.

Inter played their 2,700th game in Serie A and are the only club to have taken part in every single season. They now have 1,339 wins, 757 draws and 604 defeats, scoring 4,539 goals and conceding 2,793.

Rodrigo Palacio netted his fifth goal in five games between League and Coppa Italia, 50 in Serie A overall. Raffaele Pucino was unfortunate to score an own goal on his top flight debut. Inter become the first side to score 13 goals in the opening four rounds since Milan in 2002-03. This is their best defensive start to a season since 2003-04, when Inter had four clean sheets at this stage.

Maicosuel scored the fastest goal of the season so far, taking just 50 seconds to find the net. Chievo have conceded six goals in the first half this term, but secured their first home victory since March, ending a run of three losses and three draws. Udinese were unbeaten at the Bentegodi since a 2-0 result in 2006, followed by two wins and three stalemates. Sergio Pellissier’s 86th Serie A goal was his first since April 21, Siena 0-1 Chievo. Luca Rigoni took his career tally to seven, his first since February against Inter.

Verona have lost their last nine consecutive visits to Juventus between Serie A and B, since a 0-0 on February 14 1988, and are without a victory in 25 here. Their record here is now one win (in the 1963 Coppa Italia), five draws and 26 defeats.

The Juventus Stadium has hosted 40 Serie A matches, of which the Bianconeri won 29 and drew nine. Carlos Tevez has scored four goals in six competitive games for Juve, while Fernando Llorente marked his first in Serie A and for the club. The ex-Athletic Bilbao man hadn’t found the net since May 19 2013 in La Liga against Real Zaragoza.

Fiorentina notched up a seventh consecutive away victory in all competition. Their record in Bergamo is now 14 wins, 24 draws and 20 defeats. Manuel Pasqual marks his 243rd Serie A appearance in a Viola jersey, matching Gabriel Batistuta’s tally and putting him joint 10th in the all-time charts.

Stefano Colantuono has never beaten Vincenzo Montella with just one draw from five encounters. Atalanta suffered a second consecutive defeat and haven’t scored for 189 minutes of football. Giuseppe Rossi went up to 13 career Serie A goals, five in all competition this season.

Sampdoria have won just one of their last 15 Serie A games, which was against Juventus in May, losing eight. Cagliari are unbeaten in their last 10 encounters with Samp, home and away, including five victories. Daniele Conti has put four goals past the Blucerchiati, second only to Roma with five in his hitlist.

Alessio Cerci has scored five goals in his last six Serie A appearances. Torino ended their winless away streak that had lasted since January 20 2013, six defeats and three draws, but more importantly hadn’t conquered Bologna for 33 years. The last Serie A win here was 2-1 in 1980, followed by five losses and four stalemates.

Danilo D’Ambrosio had only scored two Serie A goals in his entire career before this season, but now has two in as many games. Of the grand total four, two of them have been past Bologna – his favourite victims.

Parma have never won away to Catania, managing eight draws and eight defeats here in all competition. They’ve failed to score in seven of their last 10 encounters with the Elefantini. Roberto Donadoni is without a victory in Catania either, earning two points from six visits. Rolando Maran is unbeaten against Donadoni, notching up two draws and as many wins.

Genoa and Livorno have drawn nine of their 11 Serie A meetings, along with one win apiece. The Amaranto’s only victory here in Serie A was 1-0 in 1939, along with eight defeats and five draws. However, they had scored in each of their last six visits, not firing blanks since a 1-0 in Serie B in 1969. Livorno have lost just one of their last 13 away matches between Serie A and B, winning five.

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