From pazza to partenze: Conte defies Cassano criticism as Inter march on | Nicky Bandini

The manager has copped stick for ‘parking the bus’, but a first Scudetto in 11 years is in sight after Inter’s 11th win in a row

As Inter prepared to extend their winning run to an 11th consecutive match, one former employee was calling for the manager to be sacked. “They don’t play well!” protested Antonio Cassano during his weekly appearance on Christian Vieri’s Twitch channel, his anger escalating as he repeated the phrase three times.

“Antonio Conte plays a 5-3-2, everyone behind the ball, everyone lined up in front of their own goal. He parks the bus, and you can’t get by. If I had a manager like this, I would go to the president and say: ‘Get rid of him.’”

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Fiorentina 2-3 Atalanta; Roma 1-0 Bologna; Juventus 3-1 Genoa; Sampdoria 0-2 Napoli; Verona 0-1 Lazio; Inter 1-0 Cagliari; Udinese 0-1 Torino; Parma 1-3 Milan; Spezia 3-2 Crotone. 

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European roundup: Atlético slip again as Inter close in on Serie A title

  • Darmian scores late Inter winner, Atalanta into top four
  • Schalke ends winless run, Depay scores twice for Lyon

Atlético Madrid returned to the top of La Liga with a 1-1 draw away to Real Betis but did so at the expense of losing yet more players to injury, leaving their title hopes hanging by a thread.

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Serie A: Lukaku helps Inter move 11 points clear with Sassuolo win

  • Lukaku and Martínez on target in 2-1 victory
  • Ronaldo scores as Juventus beat Napoli 2-1

Romelu Lukaku scored one goal and set up another as Internazionale moved a step closer to their first Serie A title in more than a decade with a 2-1 win against Sassuolo on Wednesday.

Lukaku headed in the opener in the 10th minute and provided the assist for Lautaro Martínez in the 67th as Inter moved 11 points clear of second-placed Milan with their 10th successive victory. It was Lukaku’s 21st league goal of the season but he remained four behind Cristiano Ronaldo in the scoring charts as the Juventus forward also scored in his side’s 2-1 win against Napoli.

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Serse Cosmi returns from wilderness to restore pride at struggling Crotone | Nicky Bandini

The former Perugia manager has surprised many by returning to the top flight, and by making the league’s bottom club better

It ought to have been the most predictable result of the weekend. Fifth-placed Napoli against last-placed Crotone, two teams separated by42 points in the standings and trending even further apart. The Partenopei were unbeaten in five games and fighting for a Champions League berth, while heir opponents had lost 13 out of 15 matches so far in this calendar year.

But every Italian child knows to look inside their Easter eggs for a hidden surprise. “Football is not made up of objective facts,” insisted the Crotone manager Serse Cosmi at his pre-game press conference. “If it was, then we would have no chance.” If it was, then perhaps we would have no Cosmi, whose outsized persona has tended to eclipse his performance in the dugout.

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Atalanta 3-2 Udinese; Benevento 2-2 Parma; Bologna 0-1 Internazionale; Cagliari 0-2 Hellas Verona; Genoa 1-1 Fiorentina; Lazio 2-1 Spezia; Milan 1-1 Sampdoria; Napoli 4-3 Crotone; Sassuolo 2-2 Roma; Torino 2-2 Juventus

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