The 2021/22 Serie A season is drawing to a close.
There are now just three matchdays remaining with every side, barring Salernitana, having played 35 times. In between Matchdays 34 and 35, Inter had the chance to take charge of the Scudetto race as they played their game in hand against Bologna.
The Nerazzurri, however, fell to a dramatic 2-1 defeat as a dreadful Ionut Radu error allowed Nicola Sansone to tap home for victory. That meant the title was in Milan’s hands as they entered Matchday 35 with a tricky home contest against Fiorentina in the offing.
2021/22 Serie A Matchday 35 round-up
So, how did they get on? Let’s round up all the action across Serie A from the weekend.
Leão keeps Milan on course for Scudetto
Milan just about mitigated one of four tricky assignments they have to manage if they’re to claim their first Scudetto since 2011.
Despite their recent slump, Fiorentina represented a tough test for the league leaders and they kept the Rossoneri at bay for over 80 minutes before emerging superstar Rafael Leão scored what could prove to be the biggest goal of his career thus far.
Leão pounced on Pietro Terracciano’s poor clearance before beating the Fiorentina shot-stopper at his near post to ensure Milan kept their noses ahead of Inter at the top of the table.
The Nerazzurri responded to Milan’s victory by beating Udinese 2-1 on Saturday night. Ivan Perisic and Lautaro Martinez were the scorers for the Scudetto hopefuls who’ll have the chance to leapfrog their crosstown rivals on Friday evening as they host Empoli before Milan visit Hellas Verona on Sunday night.
Juventus clinch top-four spot
AS Roma’s stellar form throughout the second half of the season left them with an outside shot of catching Juventus in the top-four race.
But, any remaining hope was dashed on Matchday 35 as they were held at home to a spirited Bologna. The stalemate, after Juventus beat Venezia 2-1 thanks to a Leonardo Bonucci brace, confirmed the Bianconeri’s place in next season’s Champions League with the gap between fourth and fifth extending to ten points with just three games remaining.
Roma were joined on 59 points by their bitter rivals Lazio, who got the better of Spezia in a thrilling 4-3 win. Juventus target Sergej Milinkovic-Savic was on target for the Biancocolesti as Francesco Acerbi won it at the death.
Salernitana’s astounding revival continues
Salernitana were denied their fourth Serie A win on the bounce amid their impressive revival by Mario Pasalic, who salvaged a point for Atalanta in their Monday night bout.
Ederson gave Salernitana the lead in the first half before Pasalic struck at the death to deny the visitors a pivotal victory.
However, David Nicola’s side had been aided in their bid for survival over the weekend as Emil Audero saved a late Domenico Criscito penalty to ensure Sampdoria claimed Derby della Lanterna bragging rights over Genoa.
Cagliari, meanwhile, were beaten 2-1 at home by Hellas Verona with Walter Mazzarri losing his job in the aftermath.
Salernitana’s point in Bergamo means survival is in their hands.
Best of the rest
Napoli maintained their advantage over Juventus in the pretty inconsequential but financially significant race for third as they thumped Sassuolo 6-1 in Naples.
Finally, a hat-trick of Andrea Belotti penalties lifted Torino to a 3-1 win away at Empoli. Il Toro were forced to come from behind against an Empoli side that claimed their first victory of 2022 last weekend but a pair of red cards made life much easier for the in-form visitors.