Five Things To Note From Serie A This Weekend

by Niccolo Conte on January 10, 2011 · 6 comments

Di Vaio Five Things To Note From Serie A This WeekendIt had been a long time that the Serie A wasn't as interesting as it is now. The vacuum left by Inter's downfall  was filled with a tempestuous AC Milan which is now beginning to slow down. Along with AC Milan, Juventus have also begun to lose their knack of outscoring their opponents, especially noticeable in their 3-0 loss to Napoli. Roma were also unable to win, and now there are rifts beginning to form between Francesco Totti and Claudio Ranieri. How will it all finish?

1. Di Vaio Never Stops Scoring

Talk about consistency. Marco Di Vaio has had a lengthy career around Europe, and at the age of 34 he still bangs in goals which keep Bologna alive in the Serie A. With his latest goal against Bari he has now reached eleven goals this season, making up about 57% of Bologna's goals in the Serie A! At the beginning of the season I wondered whether Di Vaio would continue to score so many goals, and he hasn't slowed down a bit. With Bologna all the way up in 10th place, they shouldn't have much trouble escaping relegation. Now the question springs into my mind, can Di Vaio continue this record for the rest of the season?

2. AC Milan trudge on after 4-4 draw

This was the most exciting match so far of this season in my opinion. An exciting 4-4 draw at the San Siro, with two goals coming in the final minutes of the match. While AC Milan started well and created opportunities, Udinese scored the first goal with Antonio Di Natale. As the first half drew to a close, Pato equalized with a simple tap-in delivered to him by Ibrahimovic. The second half saw Udinese go 3-1 up with a diving header by Sanchez and a fantastic run with a curling finish by Di Natale. With 12 minutes to go, AC Milan get lucky when Benatia heads a cross past Handanovic and into his own goal. Cassano replaces Seedorf and Denis replaces Di Natale, and both of the substitutes light up the match. Cassano serves Pato a great assist for the equalizer at 3-3, and then Denis scores a tap-in in the 89th minute to make it 4-3. As AC Milan fans filed out of the stadium in disgust, Cassano conjures up another sublime assist, filtering a pass through the Udinese defence for Ibrahimovic to score.

At 4-4, Allegri is happy to escape without a humiliating loss. The late equalizer will help hide the fact that this AC Milan side is unbalanced and concedes goals. If AC Milan concede this many to Udinese at the San Siro, how many will they concede to Tottenham at White Hart Lane? Hopefully Massimiliano Allegri will find a way to balance the side, or else AC Milan could be facing humiliation in the Champions League.

3. Edinson Cavani the hat-trick hero against Juventus

When Cavani joined Napoli from Palermo, I was slightly skeptical about his ability. While I thought that he wouldn't be able to score as much without the brilliant Javier Pastore providing assists, I was completely wrong. Edinson Cavani has now scored 13 goals in the Serie A, with three in Napoli's latest game against Juventus. All three goals were headers, showing that although Cavani can dance around defences and score with both feet, he can also use his tall frame to find the back of the net.

After this win, Napoli is now just four points from first placed AC Milan. If AC Milan continue to concede goals like they did against Udinese, and Napoli continue to provide Cavani assists, the title race could be between these two clubs.

4. Leonardo wins again as Inter return to form

Inter Milan's second victory under Leonardo was a tough one. The nerazurri travelled to Catania where they went a goal down after 70 minutes of suffering. But in just ten minutes Leonardo's side had turned the result around with two quick goals by Cambiasso. The first was a good finish after being served a sublime assist, and the second was a header which was served on a silver platter by Maicon's outside of the foot cross. It's a positive result for Inter who will now have to make up two of their matches which were postponed due to the FIFA Club World Cup. If they do win both of their games in hand, they'll be just six points from their rossoneri cousins at the top of the table.

5. Both Roman sides lose

Lazio and Roma were unable to take advantage of AC Milan's slip against Udinese. Lazio were defeated at home 2-1 by Lecce, and Roma lost by the same scoreline to Sampdoria. While Roma started well, with Vucinic skimming through Sampdoria's defence and pounding the ball into the goal, the game changed when Julio Sergio was sent off ten minutes into the second half. The Brazilian goalkeeper's rough challenge also gave Sampdoria a penalty which Pozzi smashed into the roof of the net. The winner was Juan's mistake, he knocked the ball back towards substitute keeper Doni, and Guberti pounced striking the ball into the back of the net for the winner.

Lazio on the other hand were unable to function when their mastermind Hernanes had a bad day. Lecce went ahead first with a shot hitting the post and bouncing off of Muslera's back and into the goal. An unlucky own goal which was equalized when Mauri awkwardly pushed the ball into the back of Lecce's goal. But it was not to be for Lazio, Lecce showed great spirit and Grossmuller tapped in the winner, his first goal for Lecce.

What are your thoughts regarding the weekend of action? Will AC Milan pick themselves back up after their draw? Can Napoli continue to win and fight for the title? Share your comments below!

6 comments… read them below or add one

1 Ben January 10, 2011 at 11:10 am

I was surprised with the Milan result. I thought for sure that they would come away with 3 points and start to pull away at the top of the table. But, being Juventino, I can’t shy away from the disgrace of a game that took place yesterday. The defense, missing Sorenson and Bonucci, was pathetic and looked lost throughout the match. Amauri, quite possibly the most useless striker to set foot on the pitch, gave another miserable display while Del Piero sat on the bench for reasons of which I am unaware. Luca Toni had a decent showing and should’ve had a goal if not for an egregious call disallowing it and that could’ve changed the shape of the game. The faster Iaquinta, Bonucci, Melo, and Buffon return, the better. Juventus look like they’re beginning a freefall and at this point in the season, that’s the last thing they can afford.


2 Niccolo Conte January 10, 2011 at 11:53 pm

Thinking about it, if Juventus got the Toni goal then the game would’ve been different. Maybe this is the beginning of a derailment of Juve’s season?

As for AC Milan, an exciting and unexpected match. While Udinese looked strong, I didn’t expect such a fantastic display by them. Thanks for the comment!


3 Peter January 11, 2011 at 12:50 pm

As much as Toni’s disallowed goal might have helped Juve, it’s hard for me to imagine that it might have changed the outcome as I thought Cavani and Napoli were still the superior side by far.

Perhaps if the reports of Juve stepping up their chase for Torres from Liverpool might be a sign that they recognize how precarious their situation in the Serie A table is.

As for Napoli, if they keep up this good form, it only bodes well for their chances in Europa League. I also can’t wait for their match on 28 Feb. v AC Milan.


4 Ben January 11, 2011 at 1:58 pm

If Juve made a serious push for Torres and actually got him, I can’t tell you how ecstatic I’d be.

I’m curious to see how Milan will play the rest of the season. They looked a little out of sync against Udinese and although I don’t see them really falling off at all the rest of the year, these next few games could bring about some adversity for them. I also believe Inter wil start to heat up. There’s been a lot of negativity surrounding the club but now that they’re beginning to come back into form and liven up, they’ll be a dangerous side for the duration of the season.


5 Niccolo Conte January 12, 2011 at 1:44 am

@Peter, I think you’re right in the end, Napoli were truly superior. Instead of going for Torres why wouldn’t they go for Cavani who gave Toni a lesson in heading yesterday! Might be a little implausible, but if Andrea Agnelli bought the right players this transfer window, Juve could make a good run this season.

I’m also looking forward to the Napoli vs AC Milan game, but it’s in more than a month, and that’s an eternity in football. Things could be very different then.

As for Ben, Torres would be a good signing, but I don’t understand why Juve doesn’t go for Cavani, or another young striker. Young being the key word. I think that Inter will be able to challenge for the title, and in the end it will be a Milan battle for the scudetto.

Thanks for all the comments!

6 zlatan lover February 5, 2011 at 11:16 am

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