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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Roma Profits as Milan in Dilemma

ROME -- Goals from Uruguay's Daniel Fonseca and Argentine Abel Balbo lifted Roma to the top of Italy's serie A as Roma kept up its perfect start to the season with a 2-0 win at Vicenza.


Also on Sunday, champion Milan's mini-crisis continued with a 2-1 defeat at Sampdoria, its second setback in five days following the shock 3-2 European Cup loss to Porto.


Milan's new Uruguayan coach Oscar Tabarez heard the words every manager fears Monday when given a resounding vote of confidence by Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi.


As is well known in football, wholesome praise from the boss often precedes a coach's dismissal.


Berlusconi said: "Tabarez has my total support. I spoke to him just after the game and told him not to worry about the criticism that would be coming his way. Milan appears to have lost its athletic sheen. Perhaps there's a sense of complacency, of relaxation after so many years of success."


Despite controversially dropping Roberto Baggio and giving veteran defender Pietro Vierchowod his Milan debut, coach Tabarez again saw his side forsake an early lead.


George Weah put the champions in front early, but Sampdoria drew level with a thumping free-kick from Argentine Juan Veron.


With 13 minutes left, captain Roberto Mancini settled the contest with a superb header -- his 128th serie A goal.


After two games Juventus and Parma each have four points after Juventus defeated Cagliari 2-1 in Turin. Parma were held 0-0 at Piacenza.


Bologna, serie B champions last season, continue to reap the reward for strengthening its squad in the summer, winning with goals from Russian Igor Kolyvanov and Carlo Nervo at Verona.


Roy Hodgson's expensively built Inter, with seven foreigners on its books, struggled to a 1-0 home win over Perugia.


San Siro fans were at least treated to another solo goal to add to Weah's end-to-end effort for Milan last weekend.


This time, Inter's Javier Zanetti started his run close to the halfway line, dribbling past three defenders before scoring.


But then, only former international goalkeeper Gianluca Pagliuca kept Inter in the game.


"The best thing would be for serie A to finish now while we're first, then I could go on holiday in the West Indies for 10 months," said Hodgson, acknowledging that his multi-star line-up would take time to knit together.


Lazio, the club Boksic left in the close season props up the league table after stumbling to its second successive league defeat.


At Atalanta, in a repeat of last season's Italian Cup final, only a late headed goal from Argentine Gabriel Batistuta spared Fiorentina from its second successive defeat.