MILAN: Edinson Cavani struck again to give Napoli a late 2-1 win at Parma and breathe new life into their Serie A challenge yesterday while Argentine teenager Mauro Icardi hit four goals in Sampdoria’s 6-0 rout of lowly Pescara.
Cavani had endured a frustrating afternoon until he hit his 18th goal of the season in the 84th minute to end Parma’s unbeaten home record and leave Napoli three points behind leaders Juventus, who drew 1-1 with Genoa on Saturday while Lazio suffered a shock 1-0 home defeat to Chievo Verona.
AS Roma lived up to their reputation as Serie A’s most entertaining side in another high-scoring game, this time drawing 3-3 at Bologna.
Eighth-placed Roma, who have the best attacking and second-worst defensive record in the league, twice led in the first half and trailed 3-2 early in the second before Panagiotis Tachtsidis gave them a point.
Stephan El Shaaraway scored his 15th goal of the season to hand AC Milan a 1-0 win at 10-man Atalanta and Thiago Ribeiro scored a 90th minute equalizer for Cagliari in a 1-1 draw at home to Palermo in their relegation battle.
Napoli went ahead in the 20th minute when Marek Hamsik sprang the offside trap to poke the ball past Antonio Mirante.
Uruguay forward Cavani was having little joy as he misplaced a header and then mistimed a run onto a through ball which would have left him with only Mirante to beat just before the break.
Napoli conceded a sloppy equalizer in the 74th minute when Nicola Sansone’s cross deflected off Paolo Cannavaro and found its way between Morgan De Sanctis and the near post.
Cavani wasted another chance when he scuffed a shot after being set free but made amends two minutes later when he broke clear of the Parma defender, easily rounded Mirante and scored into an empty net.
The win took Napoli on to 46 points from 22 games, three behind Juventus and three clear of Lazio.
An Eder penalty opened the floodgates for Sampdoria just after the half hour and Icardi opened his account four minutes before halftime.
Pedro Obiang scored five minutes after the break before Icardi grabbed a 16-minute hat trick, to add to his two goals in the 2-1 win over Juventus earlier in the month.
Alessandro Florenzi side-footed Roma ahead in the ninth minute from Francesco Totti’s pass and former Milan and Fiorentina striker Alberto Gilardino levelled eight minutes later for Bologna.
Pablo Osvaldo headed Roma back in front with his 11th goal of the season but Manolo Gabbiadini hauled Bologna level again before the half hour.
Bologna, who won 3-2 at Roma earlier in the season, went ahead for the first time nine minutes after the break when Cristian Pasquato took advantage of a mix-up in the Roma defense before Tachtsidis headed in a free kick in the 74th minute.
The action continued until the final whistle with Alessandro Diamanti twice striking the woodwork for Bologna.
Fourth-placed Inter Milan host Torino in the late game.
Former Juve forward Borriello struck in the 68th minute to leave Antonio Conte’s side on 49 points at the top, six clear of Napoli and Lazio who earlier suffered a shock 1-0 home defeat by Chievo Verona.
Genoa, playing for the first time under new manager Davide Ballardini, moved up to 18 points but remained third bottom as Chievo climbed to 11th place on 28 points.
The Juve match was marred by controversy over two penalties not given to the champions in the second half and Juventus striker Mirko Vucinic went unpunished for what appeared to be a clear handball in the area.
Luca Antonelli looked to have pulled Vucinic’s shirt as the forward stretched for Emanuele Giaccherini’s 80th-minute cross, while Andreas Granqvist sparked furious protests from Juventus when he kicked the ball on to his hand in stoppage time but referee Marco Guida failed to award a spot kick.
Alberto Paloschi’s seventh goal of the season 61 minutes into an uneventful match for Chievo with second-placed Lazio inflicted Vladimir Petkovic’s side’s first loss since early November.
Lazio were dominant but could not break down a resilient Chievo side and Paloschi tapped home his seventh goal of the season from their only chance of the game after Bojan Jokic’s shot crashed against the bar and fell at the striker’s feet.