Thursday, February 28, 2008

Catania 1 - 1 Milan

Serie A Week 25 - 27/2/08 (19.30 UK)
Catania 1 - 1 Milan
Pato 55 (M), Spinesi 63 (C)
Stadio Massimino


Alexandre Pato's opener was cancelled out in Catania, but the home side can complain at two disallowed goals.

The Sicilians had lost four on the trot, but had already defeated Milan over two legs on their way to the Coppa Italia semi-final earlier this season. Having said that, their last Serie A victory over the Rossoneri was in May 1963. Kaka was out with a knee injury and Andrea Pirlo rested.

Alexandre Pato was immediately dangerous, halted for a very tight offside position and a left-foot strike charged down. Silvestre just failed to get on the end of a set-piece at the back post.

Pato got down the right channel and sparked a promising move, but Clarence Seedorf's finish was deflected out for a corner by the desperate Mark Edusei with the goalkeeper sliding in.

Zeljko Kalac bravely plucked a Gennaro Sardo cross off Giuseppe Mascara's foot, causing pain to the little finger he dislocated just over a week ago.

Pato continued to test Ciro Polito from distance and Pippo Inzaghi nodded a Marcos Cafu cross just past the post.

In the second half Seedorf's free kick was too high to trouble Polito, while at the other end Martinez failed to make the most of a promising opportunity.

The disappointing match sprung to life thanks to 18-year-old Pato. He shook off three Catania players 25 metres out, then unleashed a right-foot snapshot that bounced just in front of Polito to slip into the far bottom corner of the net.

Inzaghi also scored on 62 minutes, but it was correctly disallowed for an offside position.

It proved decisive, as moments later substitute Gionatha Spinesi equalised for Cataia, springing the offside trap to nod in a Vargas cross from the left. Spinesi had only been on the field for four minutes and was surprisingly out of the starting XI after coming under pressure from fans for missing a penalty last week.

Catania hit the back of the net again soon after, but it was disallowed for Silvestri's soft push on Daniele Bonera. Kalac blocked a Martinez header, as the Sicilians were now pouring forward.

The Elefanti had a second goal disallowed for a tight Colucci offside position, but Milan seemed to lose all momentum after Inzaghi's attempt was ruled out.

Polito got a scare from Pato late on, but neither side was able to get past the 1-1 scoreline.


Catania: Polito; Sardo (Spinesi 59), Silvestri, Stovini, Silvestre, Varagas; Colucci, Edusei, Baiocco; Martinez (Alvarez 84), Mascara

Milan: Kalac; Cafu (Oddo 67), Bonera, Maldini, Favalli; Brocchi (Gattuso 79), Emerson, Ambrosini; Seedorf; Pato, Inzaghi (Gilardino 77)

Ref: De Marco

Channel 4