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Roma fall at home to plucky SPAL


Rome (AFP) – Targeting a fourth-straight league win Roma got more than they bargained for at home to SPAL in Serie A on Saturday as the visiting minnows ran out 2-0 winners.

The hosts had beaten Frosinone, Empoli and above all city rivals Lazio and had been hoping to improve on their sixth place in Serie A by beating SPAL ahead of Tuesday’s home Champions League game with CSKA Moscow.

Roma enjoyed the lion’s share of the action in the opening 20-minutes but failed to ever get going.

SPAL, who came a highly respectable 13th in Serie A following promotion last season, went ahead with a slickly-converted Andrea Petagna spot-kick on 38 minutes.

A flashing header from Kevin Bonifazi finished off a corner on 56 minutes to make it 2-0 to the visitors for their fourth win in nine matches, losing their other five.

In their defence Roma had rested influential players Daniele De Rossi and Aleksandar Kolarov with the Moscow match in mind.

Later Saturday, Cristiano Ronaldo will look to pick up where he left off as leaders Juventus host Genoa before next week’s trip to his former club Manchester United in the Champions League.

The evening match sees second placed Napoli at Udinese while the weekend’s blockbuster casts Inter and AC Milan together at the San Siro on Sunday.

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