Juventus remain six points behind Inter in Serie A (Roundup)

December 22nd, 2008 - 6:16 pm ICT by IANS  

AC MilanRome, Dec 22 (DPA) Juventus remained six points behind Serie A leaders Inter Milan thanks to a 3-1 away win against Atalanta in the last game before the start of a three-week winter break.Goals from captain Alessandro Del Piero, Nicola Legrottaglie and Brazilian Amauri pushed Juve on to 36 points from 17 games Sunday, while Inter lead on 42 after winning 2-1 at Siena Saturday, when Lazio beat Palermo 1-0.

At Bergamo’s brimming stadium, Sergio Floccari forced two great saves from Juve goalkeeper Alex Manninger, who also watched a header from the same striker and a Cristiano Doni free kick fly by his woodwork early in the game.

Despite their offensive grit, however, the Bergamo hosts paid dearly for a dithering defence that Del Piero and defence mainstay Legrottaglie beat twice in seven minutes.

The veteran forward flicked home a low Marco Marchionni cross as it rolled undisturbed in the area and on 37 minutes curled a corner kick for Legrottaglie’s majestic header.

The game’s pace remained high in the second half as Atalanta’s efforts were rewarded when veteran striker Christian Vieri came on for Chilean midfielder Jaime Valdes and pulled one back in the 48th minutes, nodding home a corner kick.

A header from Amauri secured Juve’s win in the 81st minutes, bringing the Brazilian’s goal tally to 11 goals, one less than top scorers Marco Di Vaio of Bologna, Alberto Gilardino of Fiorentina and Genoa’s Argentine Diego Milito.

In other Sunday action, braces from Brazilians Pato and Kaka helped AC Milan hammer Udinese 5-1 in a late match to retain third place.

Strugglers Torino beat an understrength Napoli 1-0, Fiorentina moved up to fourth place through a 1-0 win away to Sampdoria, and a brace from Japanese striker Takayuki Morimoto sank Roma 3-2 at Catania.

Genoa took home a 1-0 win from tail-enders Chievo, Lecce and Bologna drew 0-0 on the verge of the drop zone, and 10-man Cagliari and lowly Reggina drew 1-1.

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