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Atalanta hit back at Sampdoria to move fourth in Serie A


Milan (AFP) – Atalanta shook off their Champions League defeat to Real Madrid midweek with a 2-0 win at Sampdoria on Sunday to move up to fourth in Serie A.

Ruslan Malinovskiy broke through five minutes before the break with Robin Gosens adding a second with 20 minutes to go in Genoa.

Gian Piero Gasperini’s side fell 1-0 against Real Madrid in Bergamo in a game they played over 70 minutes a man down.

Duvan Zapata picked up an injury in that game and was ruled out along with Hans Hateboer, with Gasperini sitting out a touchline ban. 

Atalanta could thank goalkeeper Marco Sportiello and defender Jose Palomino for keeping their slate clear early before taking hold of the game.

The breakthrough came when Luis Muriel set up Ukrainian midfielder Malinovskyi to blast into the top corner for his second league goal this season.

Matteo Pessina and Josip Ilicic came off the bench before the hour with Atalanta thereafter dominating their midtable rivals.

Joakim Maehle set up Gosens for the second with goalkeeper Emil Audero denying Pessina the visitors a third.

Atalanta are fourth, equal on points with third-placed Juventus who were held 1-1 at Hellas Verona on Saturday.

Inter Milan could pull 10 points clear of both Juventus and Atalanta when they play 12th-placed Genoa on Sunday.

Roma in fifth could move back third with a win over second-placed AC Milan in the capital.

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