Standings implications: the top three teams did not stutter in favourable match-ups. Inter and Napoli pummeled Genoa and Empoli, while Juventus had to dig deeper against Cagliari, but maintained their lead. Fiorentina and Roma shared the spoils in a result that helps neither. Lazio smoked SPAL, but Milan kept up with an improbable late goal in Udine. Torino looked very impressive again on the road as Sampdoria were their latest victims. Sassuolo tamed Chievo very easily despite being away. Atalanta keep climbing the standings and mounted a comeback against Bologna.
Confirmations: Dries Mertens had an hat-trick on Friday, with Lorenzo Insigne and Arkadiusz Milik joining him in the box score. Ciro Immobile bagged two versus SPAL, while Paulo Dybala had an early one on Saturday. Radja Nainggolan needed just a handful of minutes to join the goal fest against the Griffon. Francesco Caputo and Joao Pedro were able to find the target in losing efforts. Jordan Veretout converted another penalty. Iago Falque scored for the second time in the past three fixtures. Marco Parolo since to have recaptured the prolificacy of his best seasons.
Guess who is back: Andrea Belotti had a dazzling brace against Sampdoria and looked like his best self. Juan Cuadrado had not scored in more than seven months, but he finally managed to take advantage of his recent uptick in playing time. Mirco Antenucci equalized the Lazio clash, resuming being productive after striking out in the previous seven appearances. Alessandro Florenzi does not have many chances considering his role, but capitalized on a short punch by Alban Lafont on Saturday. Duvan Zapata finally scored his first one with Atalanta after all kinds of struggles to begin the season.
Surprise scorers: Roberto Gagliardini has never been prone to scoring and, as a matter of fact, he never hit the net last season and the last time he did was on March 2017. He netted two like a seasoned striker against Genoa. Joao Mario’s unlikely resurgence is in full force with one goal and two assists in that same game. Danilo Cataldi has always been regarded as a good shoter and buried a missile against SPAL. Armando Izzo found his first one with Torino. Defenders Ibrahima Mbaye and Gianluca Mancini have put it into the net in back-to-back games for their sides.
Flop of the rounds: Genoa was absolutely abysmal against Inter and Krzysztof Piatek has now failed to make his presence felt for four straight games since the coaching change. Sampdoria had a very poor performance against Torino. No goals between Parma and Frosinone in a game that had sneaky potential and Leo Stulac was sent off for an X-rated tackle. Chievo continue to be hopeless.
Clutch goal: Alessio Romagnoli is getting used to late-game heroics and gifted the Devil another win after a way too comfortable combination with Suso in the box in the seventh minute of stoppage time.
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