Inter and Juventus played out an entertaining 0-0 draw in the Derby d’Italia on Sunday night. The Gazzetta Dello Sport described the result as one that ‘would make nobody happy’ and perhaps they were right. Both teams had chances to win the game, and enjoyed long spells where they looked in control. The point however, will do little to take the pressure off the under-performing Juventus nor will it deflect criticism away from Inter, who despite starting the season well have had questions asked of them.
The Nerazzurri had the chance to go top of Serie A but found themselves up against a resolute Juventus. The ‘Old Lady’ had been mocked by the Curva Nord who unveiled a spectacularly well-choreographed display, that referred to them missing out on the treble last year and had the message ‘Keep Dreaming’ front and central. The game was heated and Felipe Melo was perhaps fortunate to stay of the field. The best two chances fell to Marcelo Brozovic and Sami Khedira who each hit the woodwork.
Roma were one team that had no problem finding the net as they brushed Empoli aside in the 3-1 victory on Saturday night in the Stadio Olimpico. Despite the lack of atmosphere in the ground (due to the Ultras boycotting of the Curva Sud over the issue of barriers,) the Giallorossi put on an electrifying display. The highlight was Daniele De Rossi netting on his 500th appearance for the club. The team from the Eternal city have moved up into second and have scored the most goals in Serie A in doing so.
Maurizio Sarri’s Napoli are another team that are finding goals easy to come by and they continued with their charge up the table by beating first placed Fiorentina. Lorenzo Insigne and Gonzalo Higuain were the goal scorers in this 2-1 win with Insigne matching his season’s best ever tally of six goals. Fiorentina can take heart, that despite the defeat, there approach the game left them with a lot of positives, not least the fact that Nikola Kalinic was once again on the scoresheet.
The game of the weekend came in Genoa as they welcomed Chievo to the Stadio Luigi Ferraris. Alberto Paloschi kick started the game after only two minutes when he put the visitors ahead but before 20 minutes had passed the home side were in front thanks to goals from Leonardo Pavoletti and Serge Gakpe. The ‘Flying Donkeys’ brought on veteran striker Sergio Pellissier who also took to the sky himself and equalised with a flying back heel. As if this wasn’t enough the game was yet to have more drama when on the 93rd minute Panagiotis Tachtstidis won the game for the home side and the Ferraris erupted.
Atalanta are creeping up the table and are looking somewhat like their old selves. Last season was a disappointing campaign with a disappointing record at home. This season the Stadio Atleti Azzurri d'Italia looks once again like the fortress it used to be and the 3-0 destruction of Carpi was testament to that. Unbeaten at home in league and cup this season they are certainly enjoying themselves, confidence his high and this was typified by Alejandro Gomez who had the pick of the goals as he curled one in from a corner.
Elsewhere Verona remain winless after Udinese fought back late on to earn a 1-1 draw. The result leaves Hellas in the relegation zone although there injury list certainly can be cited in dispatches. Another 1-1 draw was played out in Turin as Milan’s poor form continues under Sinisa Mihajlovic. Two defeats and a draw in the last three will do nothing to alleviate the pressure on the Serbian Coach.
Franco Vazquez’s winner for Palermo released the pressure as they lost four in a row before Sunday’s early kick off. Bologna however, are already in crisis as they remain stuck at the bottom of the table with six defeats in seven games. Frosinone managed to move away from the bottom as they managed to beat Walter Zenga’s Sampdoria. The 2-0 win was one of the shocks of the day with Federico Dionisi chipped effort certainly winning goal of the game. Finally Sassuolo upset Lazio as they won 2-1 at the Mapei Stadium. Paolo Cannavaro’s dive for the penalty was perhaps farcical but the home team’s performances this season certainly warrant their lofty fifth place status.