Milan look to maintain resurgent form at Roma

After scoring 11 goals in its previous three Serie A games, AC Milan will be looking to maintain its resurgent form away at Roma on Saturday.

Updated: October 27, 2011 17:42 IST
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Milan: After scoring 11 goals in its previous three Serie A games, AC Milan will be looking to maintain its resurgent form away at Roma on Saturday.

Massimiliano Allegri's team picked up just one win in its opening five league matches, but three convincing victories - including a 4-1 triumph over Parma on Wednesday - have seen Milan climb the standings and it now sits two points off leader Juventus.

"It was an important win against Parma. But it will be a completely different match against Roma, very difficult," Allegri said. "If we continue to win, we'll get even closer to the top of the standings. It's important to win those you can win, because the table is now starting to stretch out."

Juventus took over top spot after Udinese slipped to its first defeat, with a 2-0 loss at Napoli.

The Turin outfit is now the only unbeaten team in the league, and it travels to Inter Milan, which is looking for only its second win at the San Siro.

Milan will be hoping its crosstown rival can do it a favor as it could go top with a win at Roma. However, the trip to the capital is its sternest test yet.

Milan has only won twice at the Stadio Olimpico in the past 14 years, but fresh in the players' memories will be last year's goalless draw which secured them the Serie A title.

"It will be a battle for the title at Roma," Allegri said. "It's a team which is difficult to face, which plays really good football."

"We will need to have a good game, with a strong will to fight as well as strong tactics."

Roma would draw level on points with Milan with a win, and the capital club will be smarting after Genoa's Juraj Kucka scored an 89th-minute winner to inflict a 2-1 defeat on Wednesday.

"I look at performances and I liked what I saw," Roma coach Luis Enrique said. "The result is so very unjust, but that's football."

Meanwhile, Inter was held to a 1-1 draw, but it could have been worse as Atalanta was awarded a penalty in the 89th which substitute goalkeeper Luca Castellazzi saved.

It was the fifth penalty Inter have conceded in eight Serie A matches.

"It's useless to be concerned about such things because in any case it's already happened," Inter president Massimo Moratti said. "Yesterday's referee is one of the best and what happened is just one of those things. Of course it's one of those things that when it happens five times in succession is annoying."

"Inter-Juventus is the derby of Italy. It will be interesting to see the form of the two teams and to understand how the season will develop."

Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon could make his return from a shoulder injury.

Juventus beat Fiorentina 2-1 on Tuesday to go top and remained there after Lazio was held to a 1-1 draw by Catania and Udinese lost at Napoli.

The result piled even more pressure on Fiorentina coach Sinisa Mihajlovic, who is under severe fan pressure on the back of a four-game winless streak.

"I'll continue on my path," Mihajlovic said after more fan protests during the match. "I'll try to remain level headed and calm and I'll also try to transmit that to the lads.

"Obviously it's not easy to take but it's part of our job."

Fiorentina hosts Genoa with Mihajlovic knowing that another defeat could spell the end of his time in charge.

Udinese will look to get back to winning ways when it hosts Palermo on Sunday, while Lazio travels to Cagliari in the day's evening kickoff.

Also Sunday, it's: Siena vs. Chievo; Bologna vs. Atalanta; Lecce vs. Novara; and Parma vs. Cesena. Catania hosts Napoli on Saturday.

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