Milan secure crucial win over Napoli | Pakistan Today

Milan secure crucial win over Napoli

MILAN – A brilliant performance by Brazilian striker Pato saw AC Milan inflict what could prove to be a fatal blow to Napoli’s Serie A title hopes here on Monday as the leaders cruised to a 3-0 win. The 21-year-old – a somewhat controversial omission from last year’s World Cup finals squad – set up Ghanaian Kevin-Prince Boateng for Milan’s second goal and then added a glorious third two minutes later to give them a five point lead over champions Inter Milan while Napoli are six points adrift of the leaders.
Swedish international striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic had opened the scoring for Milan early in the second-half from the penalty spot – a harsh call by referee Gianluca Rocchi for handball on Napoli defender Salvatore Aronica, who while the ball clearly hit his arm it did not seem to be deliberate on his part. Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri said he believed from his viewing point that Rocchi had called it correctly. “Seen from the sidelines it was a penalty,” he said.
“But independent of that moment, Milan produced a good performance, and deserved the victory.” His Napoli counterpart Walter Mazzarri said that it was not a penalty and that his team had been unnerved by it. However, he said there was still a lot of water to flow under the bridge before the title was won.
Napoli – who exited the Europa League last week – gave few problems to Milan and the game went beyond them in the 77th minute when Pato found an onrushing Boateng and the World Cup star slotted the ball home to spark wild celebrations with the former Portsmouth player tearing off his shirt. Milan travel to out of form Juventus, who have lost four of their last six matches, next Saturday.
VELA SAVES WEST BROM: Mexican international striker Carlos Vela grabbed relegation-threatened West Brom another point with another late goal here on Monday as they drew 1-1 with Stoke City in their Premier League clash. Vela – on loan from Arsenal – had only been on the pitch two minutes before he made his mark just as he did in the 1-1 draw with fellow strugglers Wolves over a week ago.
Irishman Rory Delap had put Stoke 1-0 up early in the second-half in a match that got significantly better as it went on.

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