Today at The Farm Club, we have a jumbo-sized Serie A recap, looking back on both the weekend and midweek rounds of Italian matches.
The headline of the week is Roma’s historic start to the season, as the club became the first Serie A team to win its first 10 matches. New coach Rudi Garcia deserves a ton of credit for his work with the squad that has still just allowed one goal. The Giallorossi defeated Udinese on Sunday and took down Chievo on Thursday.
Elsewhere, Napoli and Juventus both responded from their first defeats of the season in Round 8 with a pair of victories in Rounds 9 and 10. AC Milan, meanwhile, continues to struggle with inconsistency, losing over the weekend and drawing at midweek, leaving them at 10th in the table.
After a winless start to the campaign, Sampdoria won two consecutive matches after a home victory over Atalanta. The hosts scored during the 56th minute, when Shkodran Mustafi’s header deflected off Sampdoria’s Luca Cigarini and into the net.
Internazionale snapped surprising Verona’s three-match winning streak with a 4-2 victory at the San Siro. Inter capitalized on a pair of early corners, with Jonathan’s ninth-minute shot deflecting into the net, and Rodrigo Palacio scoring during the 12th. Verona pulled one back against the run of play during the 32nd minute thanks to Raphael Martinho, but Inter answered six minutes later thanks to Esteban Cambiasso. During the second half, Inter took a commanding 4-1 lead thanks to Rolando’s 56th-minute goal, while Verona got a 71st-minute consolation goal from Romulo.
Napoli triumphed at home over Torino thanks to a pair of first-half penalty kicks from Gonzalo Higuain. Higuain scored his first during the 14th minute after Dries Mertens was fouled in the area, and got his second during the 32nd after a Torino handball in the box.
Parma-3 AC Milan-2
AC Milan fought back from a two-goal deficit in the second half away at Parma, but the hosts grabbed a goal in stoppage time to win the match. Marco Parolo opened the scoring for the hosts during the 10th minute and Antonio Cassano doubled the Parma lead during first-half stoppage time. During the 61st minute, Alessandro Matri got his side on the board with his first goal for Milan, and fellow newcomer Matias Silvestre headed in a rebound two minutes later to equalize. With the match seemingly heading for a draw, Parolo put Parma on top thanks to a long-range free kick goal four minutes into stoppage time.
After suffering its first loss of the season last week, Juventus returned to the win column with a home victory over Genoa. Arturo Vidal opened the scoring for the Bianconeri with a 23rd-minute penalty kick, and Carlos Tevez doubled the lead during the 36th.
Despite playing a man down during the second half, Roma prevailed at Udinese to maintain their perfect start to the season. Maicon picked up his second yellow card of the match during the 66th minute, seemingly putting the visitors in a hole. However, during the 82nd minute, substitute Michael Bradley’s strike found the back of the net, and the American’s goal was enough for Roma to claim all three points.
Fiorentina was down a goal early to host Chievo, but prevailed thanks to a double from Juan Guillermo Cuadrado. Bostjan Cesar opened the scoring for Chievo during the 13th minute, but Cuadrado scored during the 45th and 64th to earn a victory for the visitors.
- Lazio-2 Cagliari-0 (Miroslav Klose, 52′; Antonio Candreva, 55′ (PK))
- Bologna-1 Livorno (Jose Angel Crespo, 3′)
- Catania-0 Sassuolo-0
Atalanta and Inter played to a draw in Bergamo on Tuesday. Inter struck first during the 16th minute thanks to Ricardo Alvarez, but the hosts equalized via a headed goal during the 25th minute from German Denis.
Fiorentina lost at home for the first time this season, falling to Napoli at the Stadio Artemio Franchi. The visitors went on top during the 12th minute, after Jose Callejon put Gonzalo Higuain’s cross into the back of the net. The hosts leveled during the 28th minute from a Giuseppe Rossi penalty kick, giving Rossi his league-leading ninth goal. The score did not remain level for long though, as Dries Mertens scored a 36th-minute goal to put Napoli on top for good.
AC Milan-1 Lazio-1
Kaka scored the first goal of his second stint with Milan, but the club could only manage a draw against Lazio at the San Siro. The Brazillian playmaker unleashed a beautiful curled shot during the 54th minute that put the hosts on top, but Michael Ciani equalized during the 72nd. On the plus side for Milan, who is now in tenth place, the game was probably the best of the season for Kaka, who had two shots on target including his goal, and created three chances for his teammates (via WhoScored).
Juventus thrashed Catania in Turin, scoring two goals in each half. Arturo Vidal got the first goal during the 27th minute, which was followed by a classic Andrea Pirlo free kick goal during the 34th (more on Pirlo later). Carlos Tevez and Leonardo Bonucci were the second-half scorers, getting their goals during the 66th and 71st minutes, respectively.
Livorno and Torino played to a wild draw at the Stadio Armando Picchi. Visiting Torino scored two goals in the first seven minutes thanks Ciro Immobile and Kamil Glik, both of whom were assisted by Alessio Cerci. The hosts began their comeback during the 25th minute, with a sliding goal from Paulinho. Livorno then equalized seven minutes later thanks to a strike from Leandro Greco from just inside the penalty box. Emerson scored Livorno’s third unanswered goal in stunning fashion during the 62nd minute, with a strike from about 30 yards out that has to be a goal of the year contender. However, the hosts wouldn’t come away with three points, as Cerci scored an 87th-miunte penalty kick to level the score.
Hellas Verona appeared undeterred from their weekend loss against Inter and earned their fourth win in five matches with a victory over Sampdoria. Luca Toni connected with Juan Gomez to grab the assist on Gomez’s 51st-minute goal, and Toni himself scored during the 78th minute to put the match away.
Roma has officially gotten off to the best start in Serie A history, winning their 10th straight match with a victory over Chievo on Thursday at the Stadio Olimpico. It was not an easy victory for the hosts though, as Chievo defended very well and blocked 11 of Roma’s shots, according to WhoScored. After 66 minutes of dominating possession with nothing to show for it, Roma finally got the breakthrough thanks to a Marco Boriello goal.
Player of Round 9
Marco Parolo of Parma earns top-player honors for Round 9 for his role in his side’s victory over AC Milan. Parolo played a part in all three Parma goals, grabbing the assist on Antonio Cassano’s opener and then scoring the next two himself. The final goal was a free kick in stoppage time that broke a 2-2 tie.
Player of Round 10
Torino winger Alessio Cerci earned the honors for the midweek round of matches. Like Parolo, Cerci had a hand in all three of his team’s goals, picking up a pair of assists in addition to a goal he scored himself. Cerci created a total of four chances, which was the most in the match between Torino and Livorno.
Halloween Video of the Week
The top Halloween video involving Serie A, and possibly any sport, has to be Andrea Pirlo giving a completely serious interview while donning a Halloween mask. Watch the video below.
Next Round’s Top Match
The coming weekend’s top match involves clubs with European aspirations that are currently outside of the Champions League qualification picture. Sixth-placed Fiorentina travels to the San Siro to take on AC Milan on Saturday, where the hosts will be looking to grab their first win since October 19.
For those with an eye on Roma’s historic start, the club travels north to take on Torino on Sunday.