High-flying Atalanta celebrate return home with Lecce win


Milan (AFP)

Duvan Zapata scored the first goal in Atalanta's newly-renovated stadium on Sunday as the Serie A high-fliers put their European woes behind them with a 3-1 win over Lecce to move level on points with defending champions Juventus.

Gian Piero Gasperini's side had been playing their Serie A home games at Parma's ground as their stadium was being renovated after qualifying for the Champions League for the first time this season.

And they celebrated moving back to the newly-named Gewiss Stadium with a win that keeps them third on 16 points, level with second-placed Juve and two behind leaders Inter Milan ahead of that pair's clash later on Sunday.

"We have baptised the stadium in the best way. It was a great show for the fans," said coach Gian Piero Gasperini.

Zapata had also netted in Atalanta's 2-1 defeat to Shakhtar Donetsk in their first Champions League 'home' game at the San Siro midweek, and Colombian international Zapata opened the scoring after 35 minutes as the hosts dominated lowly Lecce.

Five minutes later Alejandro Gomez added the second with Robin Gosens sealing the points 11 minutes after the break.

Fabio Lucioni headed in a free kick to pull one back for the promoted southerners, who are third-from-bottom in the relegation zone.

"The result is perhaps a bit tight for the chances we created. We still have room for growth," added Gasperini.

"Over the years we have reduced the gap with the big teams, now we want to do it also in the Champions League."

- Immobile brace -

Roma are fifth after their third draw in as many games, with their match against Cagliari at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome finishing 1-1 after Nikola Kalinic's last gasp goal for the hosts was disallowed following a VAR check.

Joao Pedro's early penalty awarded after a Gianluca Mancini handball was cancelled out by Luca Ceppitelli's own goal before half-time.

But what looked like a winner from Kalinic was disallowed after a VAR review for a foul on Fabio Pisacane which saw the Cagliari defender stretched off the pitch.

Roma stay a point ahead of city rivals Lazio, who drew 2-2 at Bologna with Ciro Immobile scoring both goals for the visitors.

Lazio's Joaquin Correa missed a chance for the winner when he sent a penalty kick over the bar two minutes from time.

Bologna coach Sinisa Mihajlovic -- a former Lazio player -- was back on the bench after undergoing a second round of chemotherapy to treat his leukaemia.

And the hosts took the lead after 21 minutes when Ladislav Krejci nodded in a Riccardo Orsolini cross.

Immobile got Lazio back level two minutes later.

Rodrigo Palacio scored Bologna's second on the rebound in the 31st minute before Serie A top scorer Immobile slotted in the equaliser eight minutes later, to bring his tally to seven league goals in as many games.

Both teams finished with 10 men after Lazio's Lucas Leiva was sent off on the hour mark with Bologna's Gary Medel following nine minutes later.

In Tuscany, Nikola Milenkovic nodded in the only goal after 72 minutes to give Fiorentina their third consecutive win as Udinese fell to their fourth defeat in seven games.

Fiorentina are eighth with Udinese a point above the relegation zone.