AC Milan lose ground on leaders Inter Milan

December 1st, 2008 - 1:49 pm ICT by IANS  

AC MilanRome, Dec 1 (DPA) Palermo forwards Fabrizio Miccoli, Edison Cavani and Fabio Simplicio sank AC Milan in a 3-1 defeat that saw the Devils slip six points behind leaders Inter Milan in the Serie A.Serie A champions Inter earlier Sunday edged visiting Napoli 2-1 for a 33-point tally from 14 games, while Juventus Saturday crushed Reggina 4-0 and now sit second ahead of Milan on goal

A missed penalty by Brazil star Ronaldinho was the greatest in a series of first-half mistakes for Milan that began when Pato squandered a great chance in the the 17 minute.

The young Brazilian fired against goalkeeper Marco Amelia’s body after pouncing on a poor clearance from Antonio Nocerino shortly before Palermo missed a great chance.

Milan goalkeeper twice denied Christian Abbiati while Cavani and Mark Bresciano also come close for Palermo before Amelia’s flooring of Pato in the area was punished with a controversial spot kick that he subsequently saved.

Ronaldinho looked to have beaten Amelia five minutes before the break but his swerving free-kick came back off the bar.

Miccoli made Milan pay when he opened the scoring on 50 minutes and the visitors hardly had time to put together a reaction before Cavani soared above Paolo Maldini to stun Abbiati with a precise header off a cross from playmaker Fabio Liverani to make it 2-0.

Simplicio secured Palermo’s win with 10 minutes left, nodding home a Federico Balzaretti cross before Ronaldinho made amends for his earlier profligacy by scoring a second spot kick in the 83rd minute to make it 3-1.

Earlier, Inter edged Napoli 2-1 in a pulsating game.

Ivan Cordoba and Ghana midfielder Sulley Muntari put Jose Mourinho’s side two goals up before Argentine striker Ezequiel Lavezzi pulled one back for Napoli.

The title-holders took the upper hand from the start and seemed to have the game secured through the two goals scored by the 25th minute.

Colombian defender Cordoba in the 16th minute volleyed home a cross from Muntari, who was on target nine minutes later. A squandered shot by Douglas Maicon allowed Muntari a deflection similar to the one that a week ago gave Inter a crucial 1-0 win over Juve.

Lavezzi pulled one back in the 36 minutes, lobbing the ball past Julio Cesar after a one-two with Marcelo Zalayeta, who set up the Argentine with an elegant flick.

Napoli showed no respect after the break with Lavezzi a constant threat. Defender Paolo Cannavaro came close for the Naples guests on the hour, but Inter’s Argentine captain Javier Zanetti had an even better close-range shot saved by Iezzo with four minutes left.

Roma continued their recovery as captain Francesco Totti scored the winner in a 1-0 win over visiting Fiorentina and Atalanta prevailed 2-0 against Lazio.

Udinese’s disastrous run continued as they went down 1-0 at home to bottom club Chievo and also had international striker Antonio Di Natale dismissed on 58 minutes. Udinese have now earned just one point in five games.

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