AS Roma move clear at top of Italian Serie A

Milan, Sep 17 (DPA) A third straight win pushed AS Roma clear atop the Italian Serie A as they beat 10-man Reggina 2-0, while Juventus were stunned 0-1 at home by Udinese.

A solid Udinese, who had notched a single point from their first two games, held Juventus on six points, a week before a mouth-watering visit by the Turin giants to Roma.

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After his two mid-week goals against Ukraine, international Antonio Di Natale confirmed his good form, stunning Juventus shortly after the break with a header off an Andrea Dossena cross.

Juventus almost fell two goals behind on 62 minutes as Ghanaian Gyan Asamoah fired against the post three minutes before Alessandro Del Piero fired a free kick against the bar.

The Juventus captain had hit the post on another first-half free kick and again hit the bar in injury time.

Roma struggled early in their game in Reggio Calabria but had their task made easy when Reggina’s Uruguayan defender Carlos Valdez was red-carded on 52 minutes.

Brazilian defender Juan had put Roma ahead two minutes earlier, and captain Francesco Totti, last season’s top scorer, notched his second goal this season on 84 minutes.

In Milan, champions Inter went second on seven points as Hernan Crespo laid in off a Douglas Maicon feed against Catania, and Brazilian Cesar scored the second in a game that saw the return of his troubled compatriot Adriano, the striker who is trying to overcome lingering psychological problems.

“Adriano made some huge steps ahead,” coach Roberto Mancini said. “I think he is on the right track. He is better physically. He lost weight in the past two weeks, and I think that soon he will be again a great player.”

A sparkling game delighted the Florence crowd, who saw Fioretnina draw 2-2 against tough visitors Atalanta, down to 10 men since the 48th-minute dismissal of Moris Carrozzieri for a second yellow card.

An own goal from Giampaolo Bellini put Fiorentina ahead on 26 minutes, but Cristiano Doni levelled, drilling a free kick under the bar thee minutes after the dismissal.

In the pulsating final phase, Riccardo Zampagna managed a second equaliser after veteran Christian Vieri put Fiorentina 2-1 ahead.

Genoa and Livorno drew 1-1, a score that also sealed the match between Palermo and Torino.

Promoted Napoli beat visiting Sampdoria 2-0, while Parma and Cagliari drew 1-1 in a late game to close the league’s third round.