Serie A round-up
AC Milan beat Cesena to go back to the top of the Serie A table, while Palermo hit five past Lazio and Udinese drew with Cagliari.
Last Updated: 19/02/12 10:28pm
AC Milan followed up their hammering of Arsenal with a victory over Cesena that lifts them back to the top of the Serie A table, while Palermo hit five past Lazio and Udinese drew with Cagliari.
Having beaten title rivals Udinese 2-1 and then thrashed the Gunners 4-0 in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League last-16 tie, AC Milan capped a superb week by defeating Cesena 3-1 away from home to go a point above Juventus at the summit.
The Rossoneri were full of confidence from the start and stormed into a 2-0 lead inside the opening 31 minutes thanks to goals from debutant Sulley Muntari and Urby Emanuelson.
Robinho then added a third 10 minutes after half-time before struggling Cesena netted a consolation goal through Daniel Pudil midway through the second half.
Palermo annihilated a weakened Lazio team 5-1 at the Renzo Barbera stadium to mean the visitors dropped to fourth.
Edgar Barreto, Massimo Donati and Matias Silvestre all scored as Palermo claimed a 3-0 half-time lead against the Roman team, who were without eight players through injuries or suspension.
Igor Budan made it 4-0 early in the second half before Palermo captain Fabrizio Miccoli capped a great evening for the hosts with the team's fifth after 51 minutes played.
To add insult, Lazio had defender Andre Dias sent off after being shown a second yellow card with 17 minutes remaining.
Lazio found the back of the net through substitute Libor Kozak five minutes from time.
Palermo's fourth successive victory at home has lifted the Sicilian club to eighth in the standings while Lazio have dropped to fourth.
The Roman outfit are level on 42 points with Udinese, who are third and now hold the last UEFA Champions League qualifying spot.
Udinese failed to score for the second successive match as they were held to yet another 0-0 draw at the Stadio Friuli by Cagliari.
Just days after a goalless draw with PAOK Saloniki in the Europa League, the first game in which the club's top goalscorer Antonio Di Natale was missing due to injury, Francesco Guidolin's side failed to find the back of the net again.
The home side had the best chances, but poor finishing prevented them from getting a win, although they still moved above Lazio.
Roma ended Parma's five-game unbeaten run to climb to fifth in the Serie A table after a narrow 1-0 success.
Fabio Borini's 26th minute goal handed the Eternal City giants all three points at the Stadio Olimpico.
Genoa fell to their third defeat in a row, dropping their first points at home in 2012 as they were edged out 1-0 by Chievo.
Cyril Thereau scored the winner in the 30th minute to lift the Flying Donkeys away from danger and level on points with their hosts, whose coach Pasquale Marino's job will now come under fresh scrutiny.
Lecce boosted their hopes of avoiding the drop by coming from behind to narrow the deficit on fellow strugglers Siena with a 4-1 win at the Stadio Via del Mare.
Cristiano Del Grosso put Siena in front in the 25th minute, but Luis Muriel levelled shortly after.
A 68th-minute penalty from Davide Di Michele and Juan Cuadrado's individual effort then put the home side in command at 3-1.
Lecce lost Manuele Blasi to a red card in the final minute, but it proved no setback for the hosts as they still managed to add a fourth goal through Davide Brivio with the last kick of the game.
Novara moved above Cesena at the bottom of the table but remain in trouble after playing out a goalless draw with Atalanta.
Both sides had plenty of chances, the best coming early in the second half when Novara's Andrea Caracciolo hit the post.