Palermo down Lecce
Palermo got back to winning ways on Thursday with a comfortable 2-0 victory over struggling Lecce in Serie A. Mauricio Pinilla put the home side ahead from the penalty spot in the 27th minute after Nenad Tomovic brought down Abel Hernandez in the area. Lecce had several chances to level, notably at the beginning of the second half when Juan Cuadrado found himself with only the goalkeeper to beat. He was left to rue his profligacy when Hernandez added Palermo’s second to seal victory with 14 minutes left to play. Palermo, who had lost their previous two matches, move up to sixth in the standings, three points behind leaders Juventus, while Lecce remain second from bottom. Lecce had the first real chance of the game in the 14th minute when a shot from Ignacio Piatti flew narrowly over the bar from outside the area. That seemed to spark Palermo into life and they dominated the rest of the half. The home side almost went in front when Federico Balzaretti’s effort was cleared by Lecce defender Tomovic just in front of the line, while goalkeeper Massimiliano Benassi pulled off a stunning save to clear Pinilla’s point-blank header. However, Pinilla made no mistake with his penalty and the Chile international could have doubled Palermo’s lead shortly before halftime, but he could only manage a weak shot after being picked out by Giulio Migliaccio. Hernandez sealed the points after playing a one-two with Eran Zahavi, before managing to squeeze a shot through two Lecce defenders and past Benassi.
Carlos Tevez’s fine halved
Manchester City on Thursday agreed to halve Carlos Tevez’s fine after the Professional Footballers Association (PFA) said it would not support the original four-week wages sanction. “Manchester City Football Club has received notification from the players’ union [PFA] that it will not support a four-week fine as a penalty for the actions of misconduct of Carlos Tevez,” a City statement said. Tevez was disciplined after coach Roberto Mancini accused the 27-year-old Argentine international striker of refusing to appear as a substitute during City’s 2-0 Champions League defeat at Bayern Munich last month. The player has denied Mancini’s claims, saying the incident was a misunderstanding and that he had only refused to warm-up because he felt it was unnecessary.
Saints player attacked
San Lorenzo’s home match with All Boys in the Argentine first division this weekend has been suspended after Saints defender Jonathan Bottinelli was attacked by a fan of his own club. Bottinelli was punched by a San Lorenzo fan after practice on Wednesday as he made his way to the dressing rooms, the player told reporters. “Today, we received notice [from the government’s security commission] that the match between San Lorenzo and All Boys is not to be played [on Sunday] and we will comply with that decision,” the Argentine Football Association said on Thursday. San Lorenzo have been under pressure from fans for their poor results in the Apertura championship.
Kaka called up by Menezes
Real Madrid’s Kaka is back in the Brazilian squad after coach Mano Menezes called him up on Thursday for next month’s friendlies against Gabon and Egypt. “I always said that when Kaka returns to a good productive level, then he would return to the side and now is a good time for him to do so,” Menezes told a press conference.