Standings implications: Juventus prevailed in the Derby d’Italia and now lead the table with a narrow maring over Inter. Atalanta continue to be on a warpath and trounced Lecce. There were few ties in this round as Napoli did not manage to bend Torino, Roma could not get past Cagliari and Lazio threw it away against Bologna. Fiorentina instead kept it rolling against Udinese. Milan returned to winning ways in a battle with Genoa on Saturday night, while Sampdoria hit rock-bottom against Verona. SPAL flattened Parma, garnering their second W of the season and thus leaving the two Genoa-based sides in the last two places of the standings.
Confirmations: Ciro Immobile keeps producing at an outrageous rate and he now has a perfect average, while Duvan Zapata is right behind him with his six goals. He was joined in the stat sheet this time by Alejandro Gomez and Robin Gosens, who both bagged their third of the season. Same number for Andrea Petagna, who always tends to answer the bell when he is needed and sunk Parma, and Joao Pedro, who had again success from the penalty spot. Nikola Milenkovic dominated in the air again and solved the tricky Udinese clash for La Viola. Lautaro Martinez converted something close to a perfect penalty.
Guess who is back: Paulo Dybala picked a big spot to break the ice in the current campaign. Frank Kessie took advantage of the fact that Krzyszotf Piatek was taken out of the game early to convert a penalty and score for the first time this season. Lasse Schone managed to put one free kick in the bag, even though it was not particularly sharp as Pepe Reina had a howler there, but the goalie later redeemed himself at his expenses by rejecting a penalty.
Surprise scorers: Theo Hernandez has been pretty good since recovering from an early injury, unseated Cristian Rodriguez and scored a clever goal against Il Grifone, with a hat-tip to the opposing goalie, Andrei Radu, who temporarily forgot how to use his hands. Fabio Lucioni had Lecce’s consolation goal in Bergamo. Ladislav Krejci bagged his second in his whole Serie A career. Marash Kumbulla coronated his surprisingly stellar start of the season with a great header against I Blucerchiati.
Flops of the round: Joaquin Correa could not play hero and skied a penalty in the final minutes versus Bologna. Napoli were not particularly effective in Turin in a weekend where they could have perhaps exploited the top-flight clash. Sampdoria could not get anything going versus Verona and also had some self-inflicted wounds since Nicola Murru had an unfortunate own goal to seal the deal. Same bitter faith for Luca Ceppitelli. Parma ran into the usual offensive issues in Ferrara. Davide Calabria was sent off the second time this season due to boneheaded plays. Davide Biraschi had a key mistake in that match with a handball to stop an adversary in the box, which earned him a red card. Quite a few expulsions in this round: Gabriel Stefezza, Gary Medel, Lucas Leiva, while Samu Castillejo and Riccardo Saponara were sent off from the bench.
Clutch goal: a little earlier than the norm but the heaviest goal of the weekend was surely Gonzalo Higuain‘s cross-shot that decided Inter-Juventus.
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