Serie A Roundup: Napoli needs late equalizer to secure draw with Genoa

Napoli's Cyril Ngonge, left, scores his side's first goal during the Serie A soccer match between Napoli and Genoa at the Diego Maradona Stadium in Naples, Italy, Feb. 17, 2024. (Alessandro Garofalo/LaPresse via AP)

ROME — Juventus’ chances of catching Serie A leader Inter Milan have been fading match by match over the last month.

The Turin club’s winless streak in the league extended to four matches on Saturday when it twice had to come back from a goal down to draw at relegation-threatened Hellas Verona 2-2.

Second-placed Juventus trails Inter — which has a game in hand even after thrashing last-placed Salernitana 4-0 on Friday — by nine points.

Juventus briefly took the league lead from Inter last month when the Nerazzurri travelled to Saudi Arabia for the Italian Super Cup but then quickly dropped out of contention with a draw at home against Empoli, a loss at Inter, and then a loss at home to Udinese.

Third-placed AC Milan can move ahead of Juventus by beating neighbouring Monza on Sunday.

At Verona, Michael Folorunsho put the hosts ahead with a spectacular long-range volley early on.

“We shouldn’t have conceded that opening goal,” Juve’s Adrien Rabiot said. “We need to get our confidence back and start winning again.”

Dusan Vlahovic equalized for Juventus with a penalty following a Verona handball on a shot from fellow Serbia international Filip Kostic for his seventh goal in 2024.

Tijjani Noslin restored Verona’s lead after the break then Juventus equalized again from Rabiot’s quick, low shot into the corner.

NAPOLI DRAW

Defending champion Napoli needed a late score from Cyril Ngonge against Genoa to rescue a 1-1 draw at home ahead of a Champions League match against Barcelona.

Napoli captain Giovanni Di Lorenzo met a cross with a header at the far post and left it for Ngonge to turn in from the center of the area in the 90th minute.

The draw ended a two-match losing streak for Napoli but the Partenopei extended their winless streak to five matches across all competitions — and the squad was whistled off the pitch by fans at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona.

Morten Frendrup put Genoa ahead shortly after the break by finishing off a counterattack with a shot from the edge of the area for the Danish midfielder’s first Serie A goal.

Napoli is ninth and Genoa is 12th.

Napoli striker Victor Osimhen watched from the stands after last season’s Serie A scoring leader returned late from the African Cup of Nations, where his Nigeria team was beaten by Ivory Coast in last weekend’s final.

Napoli hosts Barcelona in the first leg of the Champions League last 16 on Wednesday.

PENALTY SAVES

Mario Pasalic, Teun Koopmeiners and Mitchel Bakker scored as Atalanta consolidated its hold on fourth place with a 3-0 win over Sassuolo and stretched its winning streak to six matches across all competitions.

Atalanta goalkeeper Marco Carnesecchi saved successive penalty kicks from Andrea Pinamonti after a re-kick was ordered.

Carnesecchi leaped to his left to stop the first kick then went to his right to punch away the re-do after a teammate entered the area too soon.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.