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Roma beat Verona to close in on Juventus

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Rome, Jan 27 (IANS) AS Roma capitalised on Juventus' slip-up with a win at Verona, while AC Milan scored two late goals to beat Cagliari 2-1 in the Italian Serie A.


Roma did not waste the chance arising from Juventus' 1-1 draw at Lazio Saturday as they held off Verona 3-1 Sunday to narrow the gap between them and Juventus to six points, reports Xinhua.

Adem Ljajic opened the scoring on the stroke of half-time before Emil Hallfredsson equalised for Verona in the 49th minute.

Roma made it 2-1 on the hour mark through Gervinho, who scored the winner against Juventus in Roma's 1-0 Coppa Italia quarterfinal win Tuesday. 

Francesco Totti sealed the victory for the hosts with a penalty-kick eight minutes before the end.

Roma head coach Rudi Garcia was happy that his side seized the chance to cut the gap.

"We knew this was an important opportunity to take points off Napoli and Juve, so we made the most of it," he said.

"We saw during the week in the Coppa Italia that Juve are not unbeatable. Our destiny is not in our hands, but we must be ready to take advantage of their slip-ups and that's what we did," he said.

AC Milan turned the table in the last three minutes to win 2-1 at Cagliari.

The hosts looked on course for their first victory against Milan since 1998 after Marco Sau's clever finish in the 28th minute.

With three minutes left, Mario Balotelli stepped up to curl in an excellent free-kick.

Giampaolo Pazzini, introduced as a substitute for Robinho on the hour-mark, hooked in Keisuke Honda's corner in the 89th minute, as his first league goal of the season gave Milan back-to-back Serie A wins for the first time this season.

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