FOOTBALL: Inter undone by teenage pair

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The Independent Online
THERE WAS more woe for Internazionale on Saturday evening at Bari, where they lost 2-1 after being totally outclassed by a pair of teenage strikers with almost no Italian Serie A experience.

With the South African forward Phil Masinga and Sweden's Yksel Osmanovski both injured, Bari gambled on the 18-year-old Nigerian striker Michael Enninaya and the 17-year-old Antonio Cassano.

Enninaya scored Bari's opener after seven minutes with a long-range shot which left the Italian international goalkeeper Angelo Peruzzi stuck on his goal line. Christian Vieri equalised for Inter five minutes later but Bari dominated the game and Cassano scored their winner two minutes from the end, rounding Inter's substitute goalkeeper, Fabrizio Ferron, before stroking the ball home.

The victory was Bari's sixth over Inter in their last seven Serie A encounters. Enninaya, making his full league debut, and Cassano, who had made his first appearance for the club the previous weekend, did a lap of honour after their remarkable performances.

Cassano's joy was particularly keenly felt. Born on 12 July 1982 - the day Italy won the World Cup in Spain - he is an Inter supporter and had said before the match he was dreaming of scoring against Marcello Lippi's side. Inter have now lost their last two league matches and are beginning to slip off the pace in the championship race.

The Serie A leading scorer, Hernan Crespo, struck after just three minutes yesterday as the title contenders Parma beat Roma 2-0 at home. The Argentinian's 11th goal of the season and a 33rd-minute effort from the defender Stefano Torrisi lifted Parma ahead of Roma in the table.

Lazio comfortably beat Piacenza 2-0 at the Olympic stadium. Goals by Chile's Marcelo Salas and the Yugoslav defender Sinisa Mihajlovic gave the home side three points and kept them at the top of the table.

Milan conceded a late equaliser in a 2-2 draw at home to lowly Reggina. The home side, who had their midfielder Federico Giunti sent off in the 79th minute, were grateful to the Ukrainian Andriy Shevchenko for scoring twice- but his 86th-minute penalty was saved by Emanuele Belardi, who had been struck by a firework during the first half.

The Spanish League leaders, Deportivo La Coruna, beat their closest rivals, Celta Vigo, 1-0 in a pulsating Galician derby on Saturday. The home side, who were under pressure for much of the first half, secured their seventh successive win thanks to a Turu Flores strike midway through the second half.

Real Madrid scored their first home victory since August as they came from behind to beat Espanyol 2-1. They gifted the visitors the lead when they failed to clear a corner, allowing Miguel Angel Benitez the space to score, but recovered with a neat finish from Raul just before the break and a winner from Fernando Hierro eight minutes after the interval.

England's Steve McManaman made his comeback from injury as a second-half substitute for Real Madrid.

In France, an injury-time goal condemned Marseilles to a 2-1 home defeat by 10-man Lens. The goal sparked a pitch invasion by fans and riot police had to restore calm. Marseilles are in eighth place, 16 points behind the leaders, Monaco.