Milan draw hands Juve title
By Mark Buckingham
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Juventus have won the Serie A title after Milan drew 3-3 at home to Palermo.
Juventus have won the Serie A title after champions Milan lost their crown due to a 3-3 draw at home to Palermo.
Milan had to beat the European hopefuls to keep the title race alive but, after holding a 3-1 lead, they conceded two late goals to relinquish the scudetto to Juventus after Carlo Ancelotti had picked his fringe players ahead of next week's UEFA Champions League final against Liverpool.
A Serginho double, either side of Alessandro Costacurta's own goal, and a Jon Dahl Tomasson effort had the Rossoneri in control at half time before Luca Toni and Simone Barone crushed Milan's title dream.
Hernan Crespo forced an early save out of Matteo Guardalben before Milan took the lead in scrappy circumstances on eight minutes.
Guardalben was out quickly to thwart Tomasson's run before Crespo's follow-up shot clipped the Dane and trickled towards the line. Palermo defender Christian Terlizzi tried to clear but only succeeded in striking Serginho with his clearance and the ball ricocheted into the net.
But the visitors were level within 60 seconds courtesy of a similarly bizarre goal when Costacurta headed a flick-on beyond his own keeper Christian Abbiati.
After the comedy of errors, Milan took the lead again on 16 minutes with a sublime goal as Serginho raced onto Crespo's back-heel return pass and lofted the ball over Guardalben.
Just past the half-hour mark and Milan appeared to put the game beyond Palermo's reach when the impressive Christian Brocchi crossed for Tomasson to smash a volley into the ground and beyond Guardalben.
Abbiati produced a fine save from Toni before Barone volleyed over, only for Milan to end the half on top with Brocchi's low shot bouncing back off the post.
Milan appeared to put a lid on the contest during the second half, with Tomasson threatening on the breakaway by curling an effort narrowly wide.
The contest, and the title complexion, turned against Milan 15 minutes from time when Palermo were awarded a disputed penalty as Lamberto Zauli flung himself to the ground under a token challenge from Abbiati.
Toni smashed his first spot kick down the middle of the goal but, when he was order to retake it, he regained his composure and drilled a penalty into the corner of the net.
Within a further three minutes, Palermo had drawn level when Barone picked up a loose ball in the box, cut inside and clipped a low shot inside the near post to hand the title to Juve.