The achievement was more creditable since Sampdoria, reduced to 10 men following goalkeeper Fabrizio Ferron's red card, overcame a two-goal deficit to beat Milan 3-2. "Everything's going well for us," Eriksson said. "We came back from two goals down and with 10 men, that's not too bad at San Siro."
Sampdoria's title challenge was aided by Cagliari, who held the league leaders, Juventus, to a goalless draw. Sampdoria are now two points behind Juve, with Bologna, who thrashed Verona 6-1, in third place.
Juventus, whose Uruguayan defender Paolo Montero was sent off in the 34th minute, were fortunate to escape with a point as Cagliari came close on several occasions.
Bobby Robson may yet join Eriksson in decamping to England and a post at a Premiership club. The Barcelona coach was under increasing pressure yesterday after his side threw away a 2-0 lead at Nou Camp for the second time in under a month. There were angry scenes in the stadium after Oli Alvarez scored twice in the last 15 minutes to earn Oviedo a 2-2 draw.
In China, Alexi Lalas, the red-bearded songster and sometime United States international, experienced more conflicting emotions than a Tammy Wynette ballad. Lalas scored a first-half goal and was sent off just before the end as the US drew 1-1 with China in a friendly on Saturday.
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