Serie A roundup: Juventus stays 10 points clear, Roma comes back

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Juventus began a new league winning streak as they rode an early Juan Cuadrado goal to a 1-0 road win over Sampdoria, maintaining the 10 point league lead.

Cuadrado scored just seven minutes in at Stadio Luigi Ferraris, heading in Kwadwo Asamoah’s left-flank cross. They would defend strong the rest of the way, as Sampdoria out-shot Juventus 10-9, but they offered little in front of net. Juventus could have had a second had Gonzalo Higuain not inadvertently blocked a sure goal for Mario Mandzukic on the line.

The Italian giants drew on March 5th against Udinese, halting a seven-match winning streak, but now with successive wins over AC Milan and Sampdoria, the streak begins anew. The victory came at a heavy price, however, as Paulo Dybala was forced off with a leg injury in the 28th minute. This is an equally big loss for Argentina, who called Dybala up for the coming

With the comfortable lead at the top, Juventus just has to ward off Napoli. They did just that, despite Napoli’s exciting 3-2 win over Empoli. They built an early 3-0 lead on two from Lorenzo Insigne bracketing one from Dries Mertens, but Empoli put up a fight. Omar El Kaddouri scored in the 70th minute to give the hosts a lifeline, and Massimo Maccarone hit in the 84th minute to make it a game. Napoli would see the game off, to keep Mertens from rueing his missed penalty in the 7th minute.

Roma found itself down trailing Sassuolo in the opening 10 minutes, but would come from behind to earn a 3-1 win and all three points. Leandro Paredes evened it up in the 16th minute, and Mohamed Salah put Roma in front before the break. Edin Dzeko hit past the hour mark to complete the scoreline and keep Roma in third and within one point of Napoli.

Elsewhere, Lazio was held to a 0-0 draw on the road at Cagliari, harming their chances of catching the top 3. Lazio could only get four of its 14 shots on target, and they fell five points back of Roma, and now sit just two points ahead of fifth-placed Inter and sixth-placed Atalanta, both on 55 points.

Atalanta moved themselves into that advantageous position with a 3-0 win over bottom-feeders Pescara. Alejandro Gomez and Alberto Grassi scored on each end of halftime, and Gomez earned a third in stoppage time to finish things off. Fiorentina won at Crotone 1-0 thanks to a late 90th minute winner from Nikola Kalanic, but they still trail AC Milan by five points for seventh place.