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High-flying Atalanta celebrate return home with win, Napoli held at Torino

Khaleej Times 2019-10-07 03:06:20

Duvan Zapata scored the first goal in Atalanta's newly-renovated stadium on Sunday as the Serie A high-fliers put their European woes behind them with a 3-1 win over Lecce to move level on points with defending champions Juventus.
But rivals Napoli were left three points behind both Juventus and Atalanta following a goalless draw at Torino, with Roma and Lazio also held in their matches against Cagliari (1-1) and Bologna (2-2) respectively.
Gian Piero Gasperini's Atlanta had been playing their Serie A home games at Parma's ground as their stadium was being renovated after qualifying for the Champions League for the first time this season.
And they celebrated moving back to the newly-named Gewiss Stadium with a win that keeps them third on 16 points, level with second-placed Juve and two behind leaders Inter Milan ahead of that pair's clash later on Sunday.
"We have baptised the stadium in the best way. It was a great show for the fans," said Gasperini.
Zapata had netted in Atalanta's 2-1 defeat to Shakhtar Donetsk in their first Champions League 'home' game at the San Siro midweek, and the Colombian international was on target again Sunday, opening the scoring after 35 minutes as the hosts dominated lowly Lecce.
Five minutes later Alejandro Gomez added the second with Robin Gosens sealing the points 11 minutes after the break.
Fabio Lucioni headed in a free kick to pull one back for the promoted southerners, who are third-from-bottom in the relegation zone.
"The result is perhaps a bit tight for the chances we created. We still have room for growth," added Gasperini.
"Over the years we have reduced the gap with the big teams, now we want to do it also in the Champions League."
In Turin, Carlo Ancelotti's Napoli failed to take advantage of their early dominance, and are now five points adrift of leaders Inter Milan in fourth.
Torino drop to ninth having taken just four points for their last five games.
Roma are fifth, a point behind Napoli, after their third draw in as many games, with their match against Cagliari at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome finishing 1-1 after Nikola Kalinic's last gasp goal for the hosts was disallowed.
"Sick and tired of this crap costing us games. Too many times already this year," said Roma owner Jim Pallotta on Twitter.
Joao Pedro's early penalty awarded after a Gianluca Mancini handball was cancelled out by Luca Ceppitelli's own goal before half-time.
But what looked like a winner from Kalinic was disallowed without a VAR review for a foul on Fabio Pisacane which saw the Cagliari defender stretchered off.
The Romans were furious with coach Paulo Fonseca and his deputy both banished from the sidelines before the final whistle.
Roma stay a point ahead of city rivals Lazio, who drew 2-2 at Bologna with Ciro Immobile scoring both goals for the visitors.
Lazio's Joaquin Correa missed a chance for the winner when he sent a penalty kick over the bar two minutes from time.
Bologna coach Sinisa Mihajlovic - a former Lazio player - was back on the bench after undergoing a second round of chemotherapy to treat his leukaemia.
The hosts took the lead after 21 minutes when Ladislav Krejci nodded in a Riccardo Orsolini cross.
Immobile got Lazio back level two minutes later.
Rodrigo Palacio scored Bologna's second on the rebound in the 31st minute before Serie A top scorer Immobile slotted in the equaliser eight minutes later, to bring his tally to seven league goals in as many games.
Both teams finished with 10 men after Lazio's Lucas Leiva was sent off on the hour mark with Bologna's Gary Medel following nine minutes later.
In Tuscany, Nikola Milenkovic nodded in the only goal after 72 minutes to give Fiorentina their third consecutive win as Udinese fell to their fourth defeat in seven games.
Fiorentina are eighth with Udinese a point above the relegation zone.

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