Football: Juventus back on top as they end Lazio's unbeaten run

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The Independent Online
LAZIO'S dreams of winning the Italian League title all but ended last night when they were beaten 1-0 by reigning champions Juventus. The defeat ended the Rome club's unbeaten record at 24 matches stretching back to last November.

Filippo Inzaghi, the hero of Juventus' European Cup campaign, headed home the 60th minute winner to put the Turin club back on top of Serie A - five points clear of Lazio.

Lazio had Czech midfielder Pavel Nedved sent off in the 75th minute, but it seemed to make little difference as wave after wave of attacks bounced off the Juventus defence.

Juve still have to worry about Internazionale, but as the Lazio coach, Sven Goran Eriksson, had warned before the game, it is unlikely that the leaders will suddenly drop five points in six games. Inter led Serie A for a few hours before the big match in Rome after beating Sampdoria 3- 0. Two goals in two minutes from France's Benoit Cauet and Luigi Sartor and a third from Ronaldo in the 87th minute secured the points. It was Ronaldo's 19th goal of the season, making him the Serie A's joint top scorer.

Real Sociedad and Celta slipped up yesterday in their pursuit of Uefa Cup places in the Spanish league.

Barcelona, who won 2-1 against Oviedo on Saturday, extended theirs lead over Real Madrid to eight points after the defending champions only managed a 0-0 draw against Athletic Bilbao.

Third-placed Sociedad managed only a 1-1 draw against Salamanca despite taking the lead seconds before half-time through Francisco de Pedro. Portugal's Cesar Brito equalised for Salamanca in the 84th minute.

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