MILAN, Oct 2 (Reuters) - Andrea Pirlo netted a rare but
magnificent goal to give AC Milan a 1-0 win at Parma on Saturday
and send them top of Serie A pending Sunday's games.
The Italy midfielder, who started his career as a second
striker but has dropped deeper and deeper in recent seasons, let
fly from almost 40 metres on 26 minutes and the ball flewto
the top corner of the net.
Milan moved onto 11 points from six games ahead of
champions Inter Milan, on 10, who host rivals Juventus in the pick of Sunday's main programme of matches.
"It's our first win away from home," captain Gennaro
Gattuso, reborn this term having almost left for Olympiakos in
the close season, told Sky. "We are still a team which is
rebuilding and there's lots more to do."
Massimiliano Allegri's side were good value for their
victory given an array of attacks and only poor finishing from
forwards Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Robinho stopped them from
extending their advantage in the first half.
Ibrahimovic, who had scored five goals in all competitions
since his arrival from Barcelona, recovered from a minor knock
to start but often drifted to the left in the first half with
Ronaldinho returning to the lineup just behind the front two.
The Brazilian, who normally operates on the left, went close
twice in the second half while Robinho again missed the target
before being replaced by the fit-again Alexandre Pato.
Parma were quiet apart from a late onslaught although
ex-Milan forward Hernan Crespo had an early appeal for a penalty
turned down after Alessandro Nesta's challenge.
In the early game, Medhi Benatia scored deep into stoppage
time to seal bottom side Udinese's first win of the season with
a 1-0 home victory over Cesena.
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