Italy Round-up: Struggling Milan still lack home comforts

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The Independent Online

Mirko Vucinic scored his second match-winning goal in a week yesterday to help Roma beat 10-man AC Milan 1-0 in Serie A. Vucinic headed in Cicinho's cross in the 72nd minute. He also scored in Roma's 2-1 victory over Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Midfielder Massimo Ambrosini was sent off in the 80th for his second yellow card as Milan stayed winless at the San Siro in the Italian league this season.

"I don't speak when we win, let alone when we lose," Milan president Silvio Berlusconi said. "Roma deserved it."

Leaders Internazionale were surprisingly held 0-0 at Palermo to end a six-game winning streak in all competitions. Gyan Asamoah scored with a 78th-minute header to give Udinese a 1-0 win over Lazio, and Parma beat winless Livorno 3-2 with goals by Stefano Morrone, Massimo Paci and Domenico Morfeo.

Also yesterday, Catania beat Sampdoria 2-0; Empoli lost 1-0 at home to Atalanta and Siena and Reggina played out a goalless draw.

On Saturday, Napoli beat Juventus 3-1 following two controversial penalty decisions for their first win over the Bianconeri in the league since 1990. Torino beat Cagliari 2-0 for only their second victory of the season.

Inter lead the table on 21 points, followed by Roma with 18, Juventus 17, Fiorentina 16 and Udinese 15. Milan are languishing in 13th place with 10 points.

The Rossoneri, who lost 1-0 to Empoli last week, have only themselves to blame for a second straight loss at home. Kaka, Clarence Seedorf, Gennaro Gattuso and Alberto Gilardino all squandered chances before Vucinic beat goalkeeper Dida at the near post.

Vucinic played instead of Francesco Totti, whom he replaced against Sporting after the Roma captain bruised his ankle. Roma also had chances to increase their tally, including Daniele De Rossi's penalty in the 81st following Ambrosini's expulsion. But the midfielder sent the ball over the bar.

Roma coach Luciano Spalletti wasn't too worried. "He showed personality," Spalletti said of De Rossi. "He showed that he is calm, as all the team did."

Inter should have won in Palermo, but were both profligate and unlucky in front of the goal. "We created so many chances, but the ball didn't want to go in," Inter coach Roberto Mancini said.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and strike partner David Suazo both went close to scoring in the second half, and Cristian Chivu hit the post with a free kick in the 82nd. The struggling Suazo has now not scored in six league appearances.

Perhaps Mancini's bigger concern now lies with injuries to midfielder Dejan Stankovic and goalkeeper Julio Cesar. Stankovic was carried off on a stretcher after a tackle by Simplicio.

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