European Football: Milan are felled by Di Canio

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The Independent Online
Paolo Di Canio struck a superb individual winner against Milan as the leaders and champions slipped to only their second defeat of the season with a 1-0 reverse at Napoli.

Di Canio dribbled past three defenders before unleashing an unstoppable shot 10 minutes from time to give Napoli their first win over Milan since Diego Maradona led the club to the 1991 championship.

Milan's rare defeat allowed second-placed Juventus and Sampdoria, winners over Cagliari and Foggia respectively, to narrow the champions' lead to seven points and keep their faint championship hopes alive.

Juventus gained some revenge for their Uefa Cup quarter-final defeat by Cagliari with a 1-0 victory over the Sardinians, Fabrizio Ravanelli scoring a controversial, late penalty.

Sampdoria inflicted a 6-0 defeat on Foggia. Vladimir Jugovic and Roberto Mancini put Sampdoria two up inside eight minutes before second-half goals from Ruud Gullit, David Platt twice and Mancini again completed the thrashing.

Marseille effectively conceded the French championship to Paris- St Germain after managing only a

1-1 home draw with Montpellier. It left Marseille six points adrift of the Paris club who extended their unbeaten run to 26 matches with a 1-0 home win over Metz. With seven matches remaining, PSG, who meet Arsenal in the European Cup-Winners' Cup semi-finals tomorrow, have 48 points from 31 games with Marseille on 42 and third-placed Auxerre out of the title hunt on 38.

Benfica extended their lead in the Portuguese First Division to four points with a 2-1 home win over Pacos de Ferreira. The Portuguese champions, Porto, third behind Benfica and Sporting, kept in touch five points off the lead after beating Belenenses 1-0 at home.

Franz Beckenbauer may be coaching an English club next season. Beckenbauer took over as interim coach of Bayern Munich when Erich Ribbek stood down in December and has steered them to the top of the Bundesliga. Beckenbauer told a German newspaper that he would like to continue with an English club or another German club next season.

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