Inter Milan celebrate title triumph with an easy win

May 18th, 2009 - 2:50 pm ICT by IANS  

AC Milan Rome, May 18 (DPA) Inter Milan laid on the pitch an oversize scudetto numbered 17 ahead of a 3-0 win secured late Sunday over guests Siena with goals from Esteban Cambiasso, Mario Balotelli and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The game at the Giuseppe Meazza was a break in the celebrations that Inter fans began Saturday night, after AC Milan’s 2-1 defeat at Udinese assured they would retain the Serie A title for a fourth straight time.

Argentina’s Cambiasso flicked home before the break after Gianluca Curci managed two close saves, while Balotelli finished off a counter attack off a Luis Figo assist and Sweden’s star Ibra rounded off the score.

Inter have now 81 points from 36 games, and with two games left are out of reach for second-place Milan, who saw the city rivals draw level on 17 titles.

In earlier action, a lacklustre Juventus drew 2-2 at home with Atalanta to retain third place with a one-point margin over Fiorentina.

Fiorentina beat Sampdoria 1-0 and closed in on Juve, who still retained a berth granting direct access to the next Champions League.

The Florence side will have to play a qualifying round if they finish fourth, while Genoa may have to settle for a berth in the Europa League, which is to replace the UEFA Cup, as they drew 2-2 with Chievo.

Juve were sanctioned to play behind closed doors for their fans’ racist slurs against the Ghanaian origins of Balotelli a month ago.

In the empty Stadio Olimpico, Luca Cigarini put the Bergamo guests ahead in the second minute with a drive crucially deflected by Juve defender Nicola Legrottaglie.

Atalanta came close again on 15 minutes as captain Cristiano Doni almost doubled from close range, but Legrottaglie triggered Juve’s comeback nodding against the bar before Vincenzo Iaquinta levelled on 26 minutes off a Pavel Nedved cross.

Juve’s Brazilian Amauri too hit the bar, and Cristiano Zanetti also shook the woodwork, finding the net with an impressive long-range volley.

A header from Argentine substitute Maximiliano Pellegrino allowed Atalanta to close the first half on 2-2, but the guests had more chances after the break as Cigarini and Gianvito Plasmati shook the bar above Gianluigi Buffon.

Mid-table clashes saw Palermo beat Lazio 2-0 and Roma edge Catania 4-3 Saturday, while there was some real thrill in the lower reaches, where four sides vie to avoid the three-team drop zone.

Torino are fourth-from-last after beating Napoli 2-1 to secure their first away win this season.

One point adrift lie Bologna, who won 2-1 over 10-man bottom side Lecce, who had Greek Dimitris Papadopoulos dismissed and surrendered to an injury-time goal from Sergio Volpi.

Marco Di Vaio was also on target for Bologna to notch his 100th goal in the Serie A and confirmed his top-scorer position on 23 goals this season, one above Ibrahimovic.

Reggina left the bottom place and are second-last after edging Cagliari 2-1.

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