By Petar Todorovski
Milan smashed Napoli with convincing 3-0 on San Siro and extended their lead at six points ahead of now third placed Napoli. Inter is second now with five points behind. Rossonerri dominated the game and clearly deserved the victory. After the goalless first 45 minutes, Ibrahimovic brought the lead, Boateng made it two and Pato sealed the win with a wonder goal.
Although Milan failed to take the lead in the first half, which they totally deserved, they were far the better side. Zlatan Ibrahimovic was the first who tried, Gennaro Gattuso followed with a great shot, while Mark van Bommel had the greatest opportunity, but his attempt was stopped by Salvatore Aronica just before it reach the goal line.
Milan started the second half with even more pressure and it finally paid off in 49th minute. Aronica touvhed the ball with a hand in the box and the referee pointed to the 11 meters spot. Zlatan Ibrahimovic shot powerful and Morgan De Sanctis had no chance to save it although he went on the right side.
It was on Napoli to respond, but Partenopei still struggled to create any chance. Keeper De Sanctis was the one who kept them in the game, but he had strength to do that only till 77th minute. First he had impressive intervention when Alexandre Pato and Mathieu Flamini tried to double the lead, but he couldn’t do too much when Kevin-Prince Boateng netted from close range.
Napoli was destroyed and after three minutes the result was 3-0. Alexandre Pato took the ball on the centre, found some space to shot while Napoli defenders waited for him to dribble and placed breathtaking shot into the top corner.
The man who actually outplayed the opponents, Massimiliano Allegri was pleased with the result, claiming that his men deserved the three points: “We did very well in the first half, but we made a lot of errors in attack. I liked our character though, I’m happy with what the lads did, seeing as the boys played in Napoli’s half for 90 minutes. I’m happy with the win but also because my injured players are coming back to full fitness.”
Before the game Partenopei coach Walter Mazzarri stated that this match was like a final for his team, but now he revealed that a lot of games could be considered to be finals. “It doesn’t matter, we have lost this final, but we have to look to the rest,” Mazzarri said. “We gave too much space to Pato and Ibrahimovic who closed the game. We conceeded too many chances and we were punished,” he concluded.
Napoli director Riccardo Bigon had an interesting statement, leaving room for suspicions if he watched the match. “We were brilliant like usual, but their penalty conditioned the game as we had been good in the first half. In any case, we will react like we know we can. We are tranquil and united, and so we will react,”he said.
Milan players were understandingly happy. However, they’re still on the ground, claiming that the Scudetto race is still open. “We have taken a step, coming closer to winning the Scudetto, but there are still many more matches to go until the end of the season,” defender Marek Jankulovski commented.
Napoli player Andrea Dossena also commented about th Scudetto race, commenting that nothing is over. “Looking at the calendar, Milan has Juve whilst we have Brescia. It will not be easy for either side,” he said, and giving clear view about Serie A situation at the moment.