Serie A round-up: AC Milan beat Inter Milan, Napoli rout Empoli and Juventus see off Chievo
By PA Sport
Last Updated: 31/01/16 10:10pm
Carlos Bacca and M'Baye Niang hit second-half goals as AC Milan ended their long wait to celebrate victory in the city derby with a crushing 3-0 win over Inter Milan on Sunday.
Title-chasing Inter had the chance to move up to third in Serie A to close the gap on leaders Napoli to six points.
But after a bright start, Roberto Mancini's visitors took their foot off the gas to go into the dressing room 1-0 down after Alex's 35th minute header.
Inter spurned the chance to pull level 20 minutes from the end when second-half substitute Mauro Icardi hit the post from the penalty spot.
It proved the turning point of the game and Milan, who suffered a 1-0 defeat to Inter earlier this season but last won the 'Derby della Madonnina' by three clear goals in 2011, doubled their lead on 73 minutes when Bacca kneed Niang's delivery past Samir Handanovic from close range.
Four minutes later, the stadium erupted for a fourth time when Niang found the roof of the net at the second attempt to secure the points for Sinisa Mihajlovic's men.
Seven-time European champions Milan are bidding to qualify for the Champions League next season after a two-year hiatus and although they remain 14 points behind leaders Napoli, they are only six points behind third-placed Fiorentina, who drew at Genoa earlier Sunday.
Inter have now failed to win their last three games meaning the Nerazzurri, who invested heavily in new players during the summer, are nine points off the pace.
Meanwhile, Napoli kept Serie A title rivals Juventus at arm's length by drubbing Empoli 5-1 at the San Paolo.
The league's top scorer Gonzalo Higuain grabbed his sixth goal in four games before Lorenzo Insigne's strike, two from Jose Callejon and a Michele Camporese own goal settled an easy comeback.
Juventus had earlier strolled to a 4-0 victory over Chievo in Verona earlier in the day - their 12th straight Serie A victory - to put pressure on their title rivals to respond.
Alvaro Morata's first-half double put Juventus in control and Alex Sandro and Paul Pogba added to the lead after the break.
But Napoli's victory over Empoli later on Sunday sent them back to the Serie A summit, two points clear of Juve in second.
Genoa and Fiorentina shared the points from a frustrating goalless draw at the Stadio Luigi Ferraris. La Viola might well have triumphed, but Marcos Alonso was thwarted in second-half stoppage time.
Fiorentina coach Paulo Sousa was involved in one of the oddest dismissals of the season when he was sent off for intercepting the ball while it was still in play.
Sousa, standing on the touchline, saw that a Fiorentina clearance was going straight into touch, stopped the ball with his foot and handed it to a Genoa player to take a throw-in.
But television replays clearly showed that the ball was still in play when Sousa stopped it and the bemused Portuguese was ordered from the touchline.
Yet his side could well have won it at the death, but Mattia Perin pulled off a breathtaking stop to deny substitute Alonso.
Mattia Destro fired Bologna to a dramatic 3-2 home victory over Sampdoria at the Renato Dall'Ara.
The home side went two goals up inside 24 minutes as Anthony Mounier and Godfred Donsah scored to make life rather difficult for relegation-threatened Samp.
Vincenzo Montella's men hit back in the second half, however, with strikes from Luis Muriel and Joaquin Correa threatening to deny Bologna the chance to climb into the top half of the Serie A table.
But 24-year-old Destro stepped up to convert an 86th-minute penalty after former Sunderland midfielder Ricky Alvarez handled the ball in the Samp box.
Hellas Verona's quest for a first win of the Serie A season continues after a goalless draw at Torino.
The basement boys - 12 points from safety - did well to hold out at the Stadio Olimpico, where mid-table Torino went close to scoring on numerous occasions but Hellas held on for a point.
Both Udinese and Lazio had a player sent off during a bad-tempered goalless draw at Stadio Friuli.
Danilo did not reach half-time for the hosts - the Brazilian centre-back fouled Filip Djordjevic twice inside 10 minutes to collect a pair of yellow cards.
Lazio could not exploit the extra space during a turgid second half and, shortly after Keita Balde Diao missed an open goal when Udinese goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis went missing, they lost a man, too.
Substitute Alessandro Matri saw red for dissent in the 85th minute and a point from the encounter was enough to boost Lazio into eighth place.