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Serie A preview: Battle for Europe too close to call

1 May 2012 02:55

The battle for a Champions League qualifying spot in Italy is a four-horse race, with Napoli, Udinese, Inter Milan and Lazio in the hunt.

The quartet of challengers are level on 55 points, with Napoli (goal difference of plus 19) heading the other three - Udinese (plus 12), Inter (plus 5) and Lazio (plus 5).

And mid-week fixtures on Tuesday and Wednesday could make or break the respective sides' hopes of reaching Europe's top club competition.

Napoli host Palermo, Udinese travel to relegated Cesena, Inter are on the road to Parma and Lazio welcome Siena.

Lazio should be riled up after the weekend's results, as they fell 2-0 to Udinese in controversial circumstances on Sunday to leave all four teams level on points.

Edy Reja's side have called a 'press silence' after Roberto Pereyra's sealer for Udinese was scored when Lazio players believed they had heard the final whistle - they were in fact misled by a noise from the crowd.

A post-match scuffle ensued, and Andre Dias was sent off for dissent, while Federico Marchetti, Lionel Scaloni and Francelino Matuzalem could all face retrospective punishment which would hinder Lazio's Champions League challenge.

Meanwhile, Juventus will continue their title charge when they host relegation-threatened Lecce, and defending champions AC Milan must keep up the pressure on the unbeaten leaders when they welcome Atalanta.

Juve hold a three-point buffer on Milan with three games remaining, meaning a win against Lecce, followed by victory over Atalanta in mid-week, would leave them one point from the Scudetto.

In other matches, Chievo welcome Roma in Tuesday's early kick-off, while on Wednesday, Bologna travel to Catania with an eye to extending their unbeaten run to six.

Genoa remain in the relegation fight after three straight losses, but can move clear of the drop zone when they host Cagliari, while Fiorentina can relegate Novara when the two teams go head to head at Stadio Artemio Franchi.

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Info

Milan

W W W W D

2 - 0

Competition
Serie A
Date
2 May 2012
Game week
36
Kick-off
20:45
Half-time
1 - 0
Full-time
2 - 0
Venue
Stadio Giuseppe Meazza (Milano)
Attendance
51000

Goals

S. Muntari 9'
(assist by K. Boateng) 
1 - 0
Robinho 90'+3
(assist by Z. Ibrahimovic) 
2 - 0

Lineups

Substitutes

# Player Bookings
70 90+3'
16
8
1
21
25
76

Thursday 17 April

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Tuesday 15 April

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