[ITALY] Juventus beat Genoa 4-1 in the northern Italian derby Thursday, moving it up into second place and level on points with Inter Milan.
Juve's seventh successive win in all competitions, including two Champions League victories over Real Madrid, was not as easy as the scoreline suggests. Genoa and its in-form striker Diego Milito, who hit a hat trick last weekend, came to attack, and came close to scoring on a number of occasions in a lively first half. But by halftime Juventus had taken a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Czech defender Zdenek Grygera and another perfect header from Brazilian striker Amauri, his sixth league goal of the season.
It stayed that way until Amauri was substituted out with six minutes remaining. Two minutes later his replacement, Vicenzo Iaquinta, ran clear of the Genoa defense to make it 3-0 after a superb through-flick from Alessandro del Piero. Milito then scored for Genoa from a penalty kick to take his season's tally to 10, before a Sokritis Papastathopoulos own goal sealed the points for Juventus in stoppage time.
Juventus Coach Claudio Ranieri praised Genoa for playing "a very good match," while saying his own team "is much more united [than earlier in the season], but what is crucial is the character of these players. A man can fall, it happens, but the important thing is that he gets up again. The boys got up again and reacted to the problems we had."
This weekend Inter travels to Palermo, Milan hosts Chievo Verona, and Roma and Lazio face off in the Rome derby.