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Juventus still on course for record

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19 Apr 2014 22:02:27

Juventus still on course for record

Juventus remain on course for a record-breaking points haul as they closed in on the Serie A title with a 1-0 win over struggling Bologna on Saturday.

A 64th minute goal from French starlet Paul Pogba was enough to give the Turin giants all three points and take them to 90 for the season.

With four matches remaining, and having lost only twice in the league all season, Juventus can reasonably expect to become the first club to break the 100-points barrier.

It also moved them eight points clear of their only remaining title rivals, Roma, who won 1-0 at Fiorentina thanks to a 26th minute goal from Belgian midfielder Radja Nainggolan.

That was enough for Roma to secure second place and automatic qualification for the Champions League as third-place Napoli could only manage a 1-1 draw away at Udinese.

"We are certain of second place as well as a spot in the Champions League, but we still believe we can get first place in the table," said Roma coach Rudi Garcia.

"I am happy and my happiness is also for the players as they deserve this."

But Napoli's hold on the last Champions League spot is not yet under serious threat, despite Inter Milan's 2-0 away win over Parma.

Torino striker Ciro Immobile enhanced his claim for a place in Italy's World Cup squad with his 20th goal of the season.

But his last-minute effort was in vain as Lazio grabbed a point with the last kick of the game in the Olympic Stadium to secure a 3-3 draw.

The point left Torino eighth, still in contention for a Europa League spot, but two behind AC Milan, who eased to a 3-0 victory at home to Livorno.

Immobile must have imagined he had give Torino all three points and level with AC Milan as he put Torino ahead in the 89th minute, only for Antonio Candreva to grab his second of the game and salvage a point four minutes into stoppage time.

Milan encountered little resistance from Livorno in the San Siro as they cruised to their fifth consecutive victory.

Goals from Mario Balotelli, just before half-time, Moroccan Adel Taarabt, six minutes after the break, and Giampaolo Pazzini, six minutes from time, secured the points.

Inter suffered a nerve-racking few minutes around the interval at Parma, with Antonio Cassano missing a penalty just before the break before Portuguese striker Rolando made amends shortly afterwards by scoring with a diving header.

Argentine-born Gabriel Paletta was sent off for a second yellow card and even though Parma continued to press Inter, the numerical advantage told in the end as Fredy Guarin grabbed a second for Inter a minute from time.

Veteran striker Luca Toni pressed his own claim for a place in the World Cup squad with the winner away to Atalanta, in Bergamo, in a 2-1 victory, which took the much-travelled 37-year-old's tally for the season to 18.


AFP

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