Cagliari draws Torino 0-0 to step toward Serie A safety
CAGLIARI, Italy (AP) — Relegation-threatened Cagliari gained a precious point by holding Torino to 0-0 on Monday in Serie A.
Goalkeeper Alessio Cragno had a solid performance to deny Torino forwards Andrea Belotti and Simone Zaza on numerous chances.
Torino was without coach Walter Mazzarri, who has left the squad temporarily due to health issues.
Torino lets slip 2-goal lead but beats Frosinone 3-2
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Torino edged Frosinone 3-2 in a thrilling match which saw the visiting team come from two goals down but ultimately fall to its sixth successive defeat in Serie A on Friday.
There was little sign of what was to come in a cagey first half. Andrea Belotti hit the post early on before Tomas Rincon gave Torino the lead in the 20th minute with a precise strike into the bottom left corner.
ST. GALLEN, Switzerland (AP) — Mari Balotelli marked his return to the Italy team with the opening goal as the Azzurri beat Saudi Arabia 2-1 in an international friendly on Monday in Roberto Mancini's first match in charge.
Balotelli, who last played for Italy in the 2014 World Cup, broke the deadlock in the 21st minute and Andrea Belotti doubled his side's advantage before Yahya Al-Shehri pulled one back thanks to two errors in the Italian defense.
Immobile sent off as Torino beats Lazio 3-1 in Serie A
ROME (AP) — Lazio striker Ciro Immobile was sent off as Torino ended a four-match winless streak with a 3-1 victory in Serie A on Monday.
Immobile, who has 15 goals this season, was shown a direct red before the break for jerking his head at Nicolas Burdisso and landing his shoulder in the defender's face.
Immobile, who previously played for Torino, had been protesting for an apparent handball by Iago Falque on a cross of his inside the area.
Italy’s ‘lost generation’ will lack any World Cup experience
ROME (AP) — Call them Italy's "lost generation."
The Azzurri's failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup means that a good portion of the squad's players will not have appeared in football's premier tournament by the time they approach their 30s.
Winger Alessandro Florenzi will be 31 by the time the next World Cup rolls around. Center forward Andrea Belotti will be 28, as will playmaker Federico Bernardeschi and striker Domenico Berardi.
Italy risks missing World Cup after losing to Sweden 1-0
SOLNA, Sweden (AP) — Four-time champion Italy was left at serious risk of failing to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in six decades after losing at Sweden 1-0 in the opening leg of their playoff on Friday.
Italy forward Zaza in doubt for playoff against Sweden
ROME (AP) — Italy forward Simone Zaza injured his left knee in training on Thursday, a day before the first leg of a World Cup playoff against Sweden.
The Italian soccer federation said Zaza stopped training because of a "flare-up of a previous problem with his left knee."
Zaza travelled with the rest of the squad to Sweden but is in doubt for Friday's match.
Zaza, Florenzi back in Italy squad for World Cup playoff
MILAN (AP) — Simone Zaza and Alessandro Florenzi are back in the Italy squad for the first time in a year, and there was also a surprise call-up for Jorghino for the World Cup playoff against Sweden.
Zaza was recalled on Saturday after eight goals in the striker's last seven league games for Valencia. Roma's Florenzi returned after twice rupturing the ACL in his knee.
Still alive: Teams chasing World Cup spots through playoffs
A look at the lineup of teams in the intercontinental and European playoffs for the 2018 World Cup in Russia:
EUROPEAN PLAYOFFS (matches to be confirmed)
Four-time world champion Italy will be favored to qualify no matter which opponent it faces, yet the Azzurri aren't in top form after four discouraging results — a 3-0 loss to Spain, slim 1-0 wins over Israel and Albania, and a 1-1 draw with Macedonia.
Italy held by Macedonia 1-1, almost into World Cup playoffs
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Italy all but secured a qualifying playoff spot for next year's World Cup but it was booed off the pitch after drawing with Macedonia 1-1 on Friday.
Defender Giorgio Chiellini gave Italy the lead shortly before halftime but Macedonia leveled through substitute Aleksandar Trajkovski with 13 minutes remaining.
Injured Verratti out of Italy squad, replaced by Barella
MILAN (AP) — Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Marco Verratti has pulled out of the Italy squad for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Macedonia and Albania.
He was replaced by the uncapped Nicolo Barella.
Verratti played 79 minutes of Saturday's 6-2 win over Bordeaux before he was taken off with an unspecified injury.
It is a maiden call-up for the 20-year-old Barella. The Cagliari midfielder only made his debut for Italy's under-21 side last month.
NICE, France (AP) — A highly embarrassing own goal helped Italy to a 3-0 win over an understrength Uruguay side in a friendly Wednesday.
With his back to the goal, Italy forward Andrea Belotti used his chest to control a long pass from Lorenzo Insigne and Uruguay defender Jose Gimenez struck the ball decisively into the far corner of his own net seven minutes in.
Eight minutes from time, substitute Eder redirected in a cross from Manolo Gabbiadini.
MILAN (AP) — Edin Dzeko scored twice to help Roma to a 4-1 victory at AC Milan on Sunday and keep the capital side's title chances mathematically alive.
It was his 27th league goal of the season and the Bosnia-Herzegovina forward needs just two more to equal Rodolfo Volk as the Roma player with the most goals in a Serie A season. Volk set the target as far back as the 1930-31 campaign.
Dzeko also moved two clear of Torino forward Andrea Belotti in the race for the top goalscorer award.
Dzeko double sees Roma beat Empoli 2-0 in Serie A
MILAN (AP) — Edin Dzeko continued his astonishing season with a double to help Roma beat Empoli 2-0 in Serie A on Saturday.
The goals took Dzeko's tally to 33 for the season in all competitions. He is the league leading scorer with 23, one more than Torino's Andrea Belotti.
Dzeko is just three off his best tally of 26 league goals for Wolfsburg in the 2008-09 season. There are eight Serie A matches remaining.
Lazio leaves it late but beats Torino 3-1
ROME (AP) — Lazio kept up its push for a Champions League spot after two late goals helped it beat Torino 3-1 in Serie A on Monday.
Keita Balde Diao and Felipe Anderson scored in the final three minutes to send Lazio back to within four points of third-placed Napoli and the final qualifying position for Europe's premier club competition.
Belotti shines again but Torino still can’t beat AC Milan
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Italy forward Andrea Belotti has three goals in three matches against AC Milan this season but his Torino club can't beat the Rossoneri.
Milan came back from two goals down to draw at Torino 2-2 in Serie A on Monday, four days after eliminating the "Granata" from the Italian Cup.
Belotti and Marco Benassi put Torino ahead 2-0 at halftime but Andrea Bertolacci and Carlos Bacca responded for Milan.
Icardi scores to help Inter fight back to beat Chievo 3-1
MILAN (AP) — Serie A's top goalscorer will not be moving to the Chinese Super League anytime soon.
Mauro Icardi scored again to help Inter Milan come from behind to beat Chievo Verona 3-1 on Saturday, and his goalscoring rate is sure to be garnering attention among the new pacesetters in the global transfer market.
However, Icardi, who turns 24 on Thursday, insists he is not about to follow the likes of Carlos Tevez, Axel Witsel, Oscar, and John Obi Mikel to China.
AC Milan beats Torino to set up Cup meeting with Juventus
MILAN (AP) — AC Milan came back from a goal down to beat Torino 2-1 on Thursday and set up a meeting with Juventus in the Italian Cup quarterfinals.
After Andrea Belotti put Torino ahead, Juraj Kucka and Giacomo Bonaventura responded for Milan in a three-minute span of the second half.
"We were slow in the first half. In the second we accelerated and the pace of the match slowed down, enabling our quality to emerge," Bonaventura said.
Birthday boy Higuain nets 2 as Juventus beats Torino 3-1
MILAN (AP) — Gonzalo Higuain celebrated his birthday weekend with two goals as he helped Juventus to a 3-1 victory at Torino in a thrilling derby match on Sunday.
Goals from two of the best strikers in European football looked like ensuring the Derby della Mole would end with honors even. Higuain canceled out Andrea Belotti's opener for Torino, with both scoring on their first opportunity.
‘A match for men’: Turin derby isn’t just Buffon vs. Hart
ROME (AP) — Italy's best goalkeeper opposite one of the best foreigners at the position.
Serie A's top imported forward against Italy's most in-form striker.
With matchups like Gianluigi Buffon against Joe Hart in goal and Gonzalo Higuain facing Andrea Belotti in attack, Sunday's Turin derby will have plenty of individual star quality.
It's the combined quality of both squads, though, that sets the match apart from recent editions of the rivalry.
Spain & Italy win to stay tied atop WCup qualifying group
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — After missing out on the European Championship, forwards Victor "Vitolo" Machin and Andrea Belotti helped Spain and Italy move one step closer to World Cup qualification by leading their team's comfortable wins on Saturday.
Vitolo was Spain's most incisive player and put its 4-0 victory over Macedonia beyond doubt, while Belotti scored twice in Italy's 4-0 victory at Liechtenstein.
Torino slipping away from Europe after draw at Udinese
ROME (AP) — Despite the influence of England goalkeeper Joe Hart, Torino's chances of qualifying for Europe are slipping away match by match.
Torino surrendered an early advantage in a 2-2 draw at Udinese on Monday that left the Granata in eighth place, four points below the Europa League spots, and on a three-game winless streak.
Totti reaches 250 goals but Roma loses at Torino
MILAN (AP) — Before Sunday, only one player had scored 250 goals in Serie A. Now there are two.
Just two days before his 40th birthday, Francesco Totti reached that landmark with a penalty kick in Roma's 3-1 defeat at Torino.
Totti came off the bench for the second half to a standing ovation from both sets of fans and the script was set when Roma was awarded a penalty 10 minutes later.
Torino fullback Molinaro tears ACL, requires surgery
TURIN, Italy (AP) — Torino fullback Cristian Molinaro has torn a ligament in his left knee and will require surgery, depriving newly arrived goalkeeper Joe Hart of a key defender.
Molinaro injured his anterior cruciate ligament near the half-hour mark of Sunday's 0-0 draw with Empoli.
He could be out for up to six months.
Torino is already without leading forward Andrea Belotti, who injured his right thigh with Italy's national team earlier this month.
Donnarumma, 17-year-old goalkeeper, called up to Italy squad
ROME (AP) — AC Milan's 17-year-old goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma received his first call up to Italy's squad on Saturday.
New Azzurri coach Gian Piero Ventura also gave Milan defender Alessio Romagnoli, Torino forward Andrea Belotti and Genoa striker Leonardo Pavoletti their first call ups.
Italy hosts France in a friendly in Bari on Thursday then visits Israel four days later to open World Cup qualifying.