Milan, March 4 (IANS) Franck Kessie’s late penalty saved AC Milan from a home defeat in Serie A, as the Rossoneri drew with Udinese 1-1. Milan have managed just one win in its last three matches and needed another to keep pace on the table.
With Zlatan Ibrahimovic sidelined, Rafael Leao started as a makeshift center-forward while Alessio Romagnoli returned to the starting line-up on Wednesday, Xinhua news reports.
Udinese were close to breaking the deadlock right after the interval as Theo Hernandez’s wayward back pass led to Ilija Nestorovski’s header, but Romagnoli cleared it off the line.
The away side went ahead in the 69th minute as Rodrigo Becao jumped to meet a corner, and Milan’s goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma should have done better to prevent the ball from hitting the net.
It seemed to be all over deep into stoppage time, but Jens Stryger Larsen’s unnecessary handball awarded Milan a penalty. Kessie kept his cool to convert it. Milan still rank second with 53 points, three points behind Inter Milan who visit Parma on Thursday.
Leonardo Spinazzola scored the opener for Roma before prodding in an own goal, but it was Amadou Diawara that tapped in the winner to help Roma win 2-1 away to Fiorentina. Also on Wednesday, Atalanta demolished Crotone 5-1 with five different players on target, while Sassuolo shared the spoils with Napoli in a 3-3 thriller.
Elsewhere, Hellas Verona enjoyed a 3-0 away victory over Benevento, Cagliari edged past Bologna 1-0, and Genoa held Sampdoria 1-1.