Mon, Nov 25, 2013 - Page 18 News List

Allegri feeling the heat as Milan are held by Genoa

Reuters, ROME

AC Milan’s Mario Balotelli, front left, misses a penalty against Genoa in their Serie A match at the San Siro in Milan, Italy, on Saturday.

Photo: AFP

The pressure was heaped on coach Massimiliano Allegri on Saturday after AC Milan continued their dreadful run of Serie A form with a 1-1 home draw against 10-man Genoa.

Elsewhere, a late goal from Antonio Cassano snatched a surprise 1-0 win for Parma at SSC Napoli.

Milan were showered with boos and whistles after dropping to 11th place on 14 points.

“We had loads of chances, missed a penalty and they scored with their only shot,” Allegri said. “We have to be more clinical in front of goal. Even when it was 11 versus 11 we were always on the front foot, but the lads weren’t rewarded.”

Kaka put Milan in front with an elegant fourth-minute goal, the Brazilian beautifully bringing down Nigel de Jong’s long pass as he burst into the penalty area and without breaking his stride swept home an ice-cool finish.

Alberto Gilardino equalized from the penalty spot for Genoa after Urby Emanuelson clumsily brought down Sime Vrsaljko four minutes later.

Milan striker Mario Balotelli compounded Allegri’s misery by missing a 36th-minute penalty, only the second time in his career he has missed from the spot.

Not even Thomas Manfredini being sent off for fouling Balotelli for the penalty could help toothless Milan, as their misfiring attackers wasted a series of chances.

Supporters were so angry at the display that the police had to block the players exit after the match as a group of enraged fans looked to continue their protests face to face.

Milan’s trip to Celtic in the UEFA Champions League tomorrow could turn out to be Allegri’s last throw of the dice.

Napoli were sunk by Cassano as Rafael Benitez’s side were punished for a sloppy display that could have become a rout.

Cassano was in superb form and set up a number of chances for his less clinical teammates.

Even worse for Benitez, given Napoli’s crunch Champions League game at Borussia Dortmund tomorrow, was the sight of Marek Hamsik limping off only minutes after replacing the disappointing Goran Pandev.

“We have to wait and see whether he can play against Dortmund,” Benitez said.

Parma moved up to 10th after Cassano’s classy strike from outside the penalty area nine minutes from time sparked talk of a World Cup call-up.

“Of course, I think about the World Cup and I’d like to take part,” Cassano said. “If I don’t go to Brazil with the national team, I’ll go there with my wife and children.”

“If he carries on playing like this he can go to Brazil,” Parma coach Roberto Donadoni said.

Napoli stayed third on 28 points, four behind unbeaten league leaders AS Roma, who take on Cagliari today.

AC Chievo Verona remained rooted to the bottom despite a stoppage-time Dejan Lazarevic strike earning a dramatic 1-0 derby victory against Hellas Verona.

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