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Racist chants overshadow Napoli's win

February 04, 2016 07:55 IST

Napoli stay top after game suspended for racist chanting


IMAGE: Supporters of Napoli during the Serie A match against Empoli FC. Photograph: Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

Napoli maintained their two-point advantage at the top of Series with a 2-0 victory at Lazio on Wednesday in a game suspended due to racist chanting as Juventus beat Genoa 1-0 to break a club record for consecutive league wins in a single season.

Gonzalo Higuain scored his 23rd goal in 23 league games for Napoli this season when he finished from close range after fine work from Marek Hamsik in the 24th minute.

Jose Callejon added a second when he lobbed the advancing Federico Marchetti after Lorenzo Insigne's exquisite long ball.

The match was halted for three minutes in the 68th minute after racist abuse aimed at visiting centre back Kalidou Koulibaly, but the referee opted to play on having consulted with players, coaches and officials and the game was completed.


IMAGE: The referee Massimiliano Irrati suspends temporarily the match for racist slogans during the Serie A match between SS Lazio and SSC Napoli. Photograph: Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Napoli moved on to 53 points, two clear of Juve and eight ahead of third-placed Fiorentina who survived a late scare to beat struggling Carpi 2-1 with Mauro Zarate bagging a sensational 93rd-minute winner.

Fiorentina coach Paulo Sousa was sent off for the second consecutive match.

Juve registered their 13th consecutive league win thanks toa moment of magic from Juan Cuadrado, who evaded Armando Izzo with a superb shimmy before his cross deflected past Mattia Perin in the 30th minute.

The champions stayed second on 51 points and Massimiliano Allegri's side are only four wins away from equalling InterMilan's record of 17 consecutive Serie A victories set in the 2006-07 season.

The win came at a cost, however, with Martin Caceres and Patrice Evra being replaced due to injury and Simone Zaza was sent off in stoppage time.

“Sunday’s 4-0 win at Chievo created a lot of euphoria, but tonight our feet are back on the ground," Allegri told Mediaset Premium. "This reminded us that there are no easy games.

“I'm not interested in the record," he added. "There are 15 rounds to go and we need a certain number of victories, whether they are in a row or not is irrelevant.”

Inter halted a miserable run with a 1-0 home win over Chievo, Mauro Icardi ending his recent scoring drought, while Carlos Bacca's fifth goal in his last five games set AC Milan on their way to a 2-0 victory at Palermo. Bottom club Verona won their first league game of the season when they beat 10-man Atalanta 2-1.

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