ROME: Inter Milan brushed aside the absence of manager Jose Mourinho to climb to the top of Serie A on the strength of a 3-1 success over Napoli on Wednesday.
A verbal assault against the referee in last weekend’s win over Udinese earned Mourinho a one-match touchline ban but these three points will have eased the Portuguese coach’s mood.
Samuel Eto’o put aside his financial dispute with former club Barcelona to open the scoring in the third minute and his new strike partner, former Genoa forward Diego Milito, doubled up two minutes later. Another Inter newboy, Brazil World Cup winning defender Lucio, who moved from Bayern Munich in the close season, made it 3-0 just after the half hour mark with a header.
Napoli midfielder Ezequiel Lavezzi pulled one back before the break. The win pushed defending champions Inter up to the Serie A summit after Sampdoria fell to a 2-0 defeat at Fiorentina — Samp’s first loss of the campaign. Montenegro striker Stevan Jovetic put the hosts into a 25th minute lead with Alberto Gilardino — red carded in the Champions League tie against Lyon last week — killing off the game in the second half.
Elsewhere AS Roma captain and talisman Francesco Totti converted a penalty in the 88th minute to earn the Italian capital side a share of the spoils in a six goal thriller at Palermo. AC Milan’s difficult start to the season continued when they came away from a trip to Udinese 1-0 losers after the Serie A’s leading goalscorer Antonio Di Natale produced the only goal of the encounter in the 22nd minute.
Fifth-placed Parma did their title hopes no end of good with a 2-1 win at Lazio. Former Manchester City striker Valeri Bojinov put Parma ahead with Mauro Zarate levelling from the spot in the 42nd minute. In first half injury time Nicola Amoruso bagged the winner, another penalty.