Italy roundup: Sassuolo’s stunning escape complete, Juve tips Roma

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The relegation picture is crystal clear in Serie A after some season-long strugglers pulled off major Sunday wins to clinch safety in Italy’s top flight.

Catania couldn’t celebrate its 2-1 road win in a relegation six-pointer against Bologna, as the three points they gained kept them in the final relegation slot. Wins in successive weeks could not save the Sicilian club, who is now four points back of No. 17 Chievo.

That’s because Chievo Verona and Sassuolo saved their seasons with big wins. In the case of the latter club, it punctuated a stunning turnaround that will see them in 16th after being mired in the drop zone for most of the season.

Dario Dainelli headed a corner kick home in the 72nd minute, and his goal stood as Chievo Verona secured safety with a 1-0 win at Cagliari.

Sealing the bottom three’s fates was Antonio Floro Flores. The 30-year-old’s brace — on 8 shots — started and finished Sassuolo‘s scoring a 4-2 win over visiting Genoa.

This sends Bologna and Catania down, with Livorno also headed to Serie B after a 1-0 loss to visiting Fiorentina.

Elsewhere

  • Inter Milan 4-1 Lazio – Rodrigo Palacio scores twice as Inter overcome conceding in second minute to crush visitors.
  • Verona 2-2 Udinese — Legends Luca Toni and Antonio Di Natale part of the points share with goals.
  • Atalanta 2-1 AC Milan — Europe seems a distant hope for AC Milan after a Franco Brienza marker in the sixth minute of stoppage time gives the home team all three points.
  • Sampdoria 2-5 Napoli —  Four different players score for Napoli, which also gets a Sampdoria own goal to pile on the hosts.
  • Torino 1-1 Parma – Ciro Immobile scored again for Torino, ensuring the final Europa League spot won’t be settled until the last day of the season.
  • Roma 0-1 Juventus — Southampton outcast Dani Osvaldo’s first Juve goal holds up as winner.

STANDINGS

Team GP W D L GF GA GD Home Away PTS
Juventus 37 32 3 2 77 23 54 18-0-0 14-3-2 99
Roma 37 26 7 4 72 24 48 15-3-1 11-4-3 85
Napoli 37 22 9 6 72 38 34 12-4-2 10-5-4 75
Fiorentina 37 19 7 11 63 42 21 9-3-6 10-4-5 64
Inter Milan 37 15 15 7 61 37 24 8-9-2 7-6-5 60
Torino 37 15 11 11 56 46 10 9-6-4 6-5-7 56
Parma 37 14 13 10 56 46 10 8-7-3 6-6-7 55
AC Milan 37 15 9 13 55 48 7 10-4-4 5-5-9 54
Verona 37 16 6 15 61 63 -2 10-3-6 6-3-9 54
Lazio 37 14 11 12 53 54 -1 9-6-3 5-5-9 53
Atalanta 37 15 5 17 42 49 -7 11-3-5 4-2-12 50
Sampdoria 37 12 8 17 45 59 -14 7-5-7 5-3-10 44
Udinese 37 12 7 18 43 54 -11 9-3-6 3-4-12 43
Genoa 37 10 11 16 40 50 -10 7-5-6 3-6-10 41
Cagliari 37 9 12 16 34 50 -16 8-4-7 1-8-9 39
Sassuolo 37 9 7 21 42 70 -28 5-2-12 4-5-9 34
Chievo 37 9 6 22 32 53 -21 5-2-11 4-4-11 33
Catania 37 7 8 22 32 65 -33 6-6-6 1-2-16 29
Bologna 37 5 14 18 28 57 -29 3-8-8 2-6-10 29
Livorno 37 6 7 24 39 75 -36 4-5-10 2-2-14 25

 

Alex Morgan named CONCACAF Female POY, Navas wins Male POY

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CONCACAF awarded some of its finest players and coaches on Sunday night, and two familiar faces took home the evening’s most notable awards.

[ MORE: Making sense of table in Man City’s world ]

U.S. Women’s National Team forward Alex Morgan (Orlando Pride) and Keylor Navas of Costa Rica and Real Madrid each earned Female and Male Player of the Year honors, after boasting tremendous 2017 seasons.

Morgan who primarily plays for Orlando in the NWSL, was also a member of Lyon, who went on to win the Women’s Champions League this past season.

Navas, on the other hand, played a key role in Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League run, as well as Los Blancos’ La Liga title.

For Morgan, the award is her third since CONCACAF began handing out its annual awards in 2013. Meanwhile, Navas has now won Male Player of the Year on two occasions.

Leon Bailey stars but Bayer Leverkusen held 4-4 by Hannover

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BERLIN (AP) Jamaica striker Leon Bailey scored twice after coming on as a substitute but Bayer Leverkusen failed to hang on as Hannover grabbed a 4-4 draw in the Bundesliga on Sunday.

[ MORE: Liverpool smashes Bournemouth to move fourth ]

Bailey, who came on at the break, needed only two minutes to equalize after Hannover had gone 3-2 ahead, and he scored again 20 minutes later to put Leverkusen 4-3 in front.

But the 20-year-old missed another chance to complete a hat trick and Julian Korb scored late for Hannover to draw.

“I had a third chance, and I just know if I had taken that chance it would have been over for them. It’s just unlucky. But that’s football,” said Bailey. “A wise man learns from his mistakes. But a wiser man learns from others’ mistakes.”

Both teams traded goals on an afternoon to forget for the goalkeepers.

“It was worth the entrance price for the spectators,” Korb said.

Julian Brandt fired Leverkusen into an early lead with a brilliant volley but Ihlas Bebou replied straight away with a header for Hannover.

Niclas Fuellkrug put the home side ahead with a penalty, only for Admir Mehmedi to equalize four minutes later for Leverkusen.

Hannover went ahead again after Fuellkrug set up Felix Klaus with his heel before the break, when Leverkusen coach Heiko Herrlich reacted with two substitutions.

One of them was Bailey, who raced forward to reach Kai Havertz’s through ball and kept his cool to beat Hannover `keeper Philipp Tschauner.

Bailey claimed his sixth goal of the season after the game’s longest stretch without a goal when Mehmedi played him through on a counterattack after a Hannover corner.

But there was further drama to come as Bebou eluded three Leverkusen defenders to set up Korb for Hannover’s equalizer with seven minutes remaining.

Leipzig, level on points with Leverkusen, had the chance to go second again with a win at home against Hertha Berlin later Sunday.

The 2 Robbies podcast: Liverpool dominates, selling Coutinho discussed

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Robbie Earle and Robbie Mustoe start off today’s show by discussing Man United’s win at The Hawthorns as Lukaku scores for the second straight match with Juan Mata impressing with his link up play. The guys also look at Alan Pardew’s influence on the Baggies. Liverpool net four in a dominating victory over Bournemouth and with Mo Salah continuing to dominate, the Robbies ask: can Liverpool now afford to sell Coutinho? And finally, the guys discuss Bournemouth’s recent struggles.

Join Earle & Mustoe on The 2 Robbies Football Show, Saturdays at 5pm ET. Listen on the NBCSports Radio App and call 855-323-4622 in the U.S. for lively passionate debate.

All of the The 2 Robbies content can be accessed by clicking on this link:

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Listen to the latest pod by clicking play below.

Follow them on Twitter @The2Robbies

Report: PSV likely to land Man City, USMNT’s Palmer-Brown on loan

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A number of well-known American players have completed moves to Europe over the years, and a former Sporting KC defender is about to embark on his own journey abroad.

[ MORE: Liverpool smashes Bournemouth to go fourth ]

U.S. youth national team centerback Erik Palmer-Brown is headed to Premier League side Manchester City, who currently leads the English top flight, after signing a pre-contract with the club back in September.

It is now believed though that the young player will go on loan once he arrives with the English side.

Metro is reporting is that Palmer-Brown is likely to complete a move to Dutch Eredivisie club PSV Eindhoven on loan.

Palmer-Brown helped the U.S. Under-20 national team reach the quarterfinals at this year’s U-20 World Cup in South Korea, after previously representing several other U.S. youth national teams.