Serie A: Ronaldo hat trick has Juventus hot on AC Milan’s heels (video)

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A roundup of the weekend’s results in Serie A, where Inter Milan stayed the course in the title race, Cristiano Ronaldo bagged a hat trick, and AC Milan continued to crumble…

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Torino 1-2 Inter Milan

Inter Milan made it might interesting for as long as they possibly could, but Antonio Conte’s side eventually pulled ahead to secure all three points to extend their winning (eight games) and unbeaten streaks (11) with a 2-1 win away to Torino.

Romelu Lukaku opened the scoring from the penalty spot just after the hour mark, and though Inter dominated most statistical categories they were quite relieved to finally go ahead. Alas, Torino hit back through Antonio Sanabria just eight minutes later.

The score remained 1-1 into the final five minutes of the game, when Lautaro Martinez looped a sensational header back across the face of goal while falling away from goal himself. Alexis Sanchez’s cross found the Argentine near the penalty spot, and Martinez made the absolute most of his magical moment.

Cagliari 1-3 Juventus

Ronaldo needed all of 32 minutes to secure a hat trick and lead Juventus to a resounding 3-1 win away to Cagliari. The gap between the nine-time defending Serie A champions and current leaders Inter stands at 10 points with 12 games left to play (11 for Inter).

Goal no. 1 came from a corner kick, headed home from close range in the 10th minute, as no one came close to matching Ronaldo’s leap to get on the end of Juan Cuadrado’s fantastic ball into the box.

The second came from the penalty spot, in the 25th, after Ronaldo won the spot kick himself. Alvaro Morata played him in behind the defense and goalkeeper Alessio Cragno was forced to rush off his line, but he got none of the ball and all of Ronaldo.

Seven minutes later, Ronaldo finished off a counter-attack with a left-footed strike to make it 3-0. Federico Chiesa found him with a cross-field diagonal ball, and Ronaldo created the space he needed with a step-over before firing just inside the far post.

The hat trick takes Ronaldo to 23 league goals on the season, now four ahead of Lukaku in the Golden Boot race.

AC Milan 0-1 Napoli

AC Milan, on the other hand, were far less fortunate this weekend as they were beaten at home by Napoli to fall nine points behind their rivals and league leaders.

The defeat is the third in six games for Stefano Pioli’s side (2W-1D-3L) — a run which has come at the worst possible time, with both Inter and Juventus surging during the second half of the season.

Other Serie A results

Parma 2-0 Roma
Lazio 3-2 Crotone
Atalanta 3-1 Spezia
Benevento 1-4 Fiorentina
Sassuolo 3-2 Hellas Verona
Genoa 1-1 Udinese
Bologna 3-1 Sampdoria

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