El Shaarawy shines as Parma hold AC Milan
Italy under-21 striker Stephan El Shaarawy scored his fourth goal in six Serie A games as a dominant AC Milan were held 1-1 away to Parma on Saturday.
El Shaarawy, who is part Egyptian, gave Massimiliano Allegri's embattled side a huge boost with two goals in mid-week as the Rossoneri beat Cagliari 2-0 to register their first win of the season at the San Siro.
And the 19-year-old forward boosted his growing reputation by opening the scoring against Parma with a fine individual goal in the 50th minute.
It was end-to-end stuff at the Ennio Tardini stadium and Parma, with only one win so far this season, claimed an equaliser when midfielder Daniele Galloppa's free-kick from 20 yards beat Christian Abbiati at his near post.
The result allowed Allegri's side to move up to ninth ahead of the rest of the weekend's fixtures.
After weeks of waiting, Bojan Krkic was finally handed his Milan debut in the centre of a three-man attack with El Shaarawy and Kevin-Prince Boateng.
Boateng was the first to test Antonio Mirante, although his 20-yard shot on the quarter-hour was scooped up by the goalkeeper, who then got down low to save the Ghanaian's header from Antonio Nocerino's superb cross.
Parma's chances until then had been rare and defender Aleandro Rosi was left frustrated when his ambitious volley on the edge of the area swerved wide of Christian Abbiati's goal.
El Shaarawy then launched a counter-attack and impressed as he muscled his way past three Parma players on the left only for his lay-off to Bojan to go begging.
Moments later his pass to Bojan on the edge of the area allowed the Spaniard a touch before he unleashed a superb right-foot shot that dipped over Mirante's crossbar.
Five minutes after the restart the pair combined again and this time Milan got the goal they deserved; Bojan's pass to El Shaarawy allowing the 'Little Pharaoh' to stride past Cristian Zaccardo and beat Mirante at his near post.
Milan were dominating, with Bojan spurning a chance for a first-time shot on 51 minutes and then Boateng seeing his close-range header go wide of the post.
Parma gave Milan a scare when Greek midfielder Sotiris Ninis's cross caused panic in the area. It took a deflection and left Abbiati all at sea, only for Massimo Gobbi to send his effort wide.
At the other end, Boateng latched on to a poor Parma clearance on the hour mark but his powerful drive was parried by Mirante.
Despite Milan's protests, Ninis won a free-kick on the edge of the area after being tackled by Riccardo Montolivo.
Galloppa's free-kick from 20 yards out appeared to take a slight deflection in the defensive wall before beating Abbiati at his near post.
Allegri replaced Boateng with Brazilian Robinho in the 70th minute, while Bojan made way for Giampaolo Pazzini with nine minutes remaining.
Milan's last real chance for a winner was a 25-yard free-kick from Montolivo, which forced Mirante into a dramatic diving save.
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