Sunday, May 8, 2011

AC Milan clinches 18th Serie A title and first since 2004

Sunday, May 8, 2011








ROME (AP) ? AC Milan ended five years of dominance by city rival Inter Milan after clinching the Serie A title on Saturday following a heated 0-0 draw at Roma.





  • Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates AC Milan's after Italian Serie A match against AS Roma in Rome. AC Milan claimed an 18th Serie A title following a 0-0 draw in the match.

    By Alberto Pizzoli, AFP/Getty Images


    Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates AC Milan's after Italian Serie A match against AS Roma in Rome. AC Milan claimed an 18th Serie A title following a 0-0 draw in the match.



By Alberto Pizzoli, AFP/Getty Images


Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates AC Milan's after Italian Serie A match against AS Roma in Rome. AC Milan claimed an 18th Serie A title following a 0-0 draw in the match.






Milan leads Inter by nine points and is 10 in front of Napoli. While Inter could still mathematically finish even on points, Milan holds the tiebreaker courtesy of its two derby wins.


The closest either side came to scoring was a shot by Milan striker Robinho that bounced off the post one minute into the second half.


Inter won the last five Italian league titles, while Milan's last championship came in 2004.


Milan and Inter are tied with 18 titles each, while Juventus leads the all-time list with 27 championships.


Roma, which is still battling for a Champions League spot, drew level on points with Lazio for fourth place. Lazio is due to visit Udinese — which is one point behind the two Roman clubs — on Sunday.


Inter hosts Fiorentina on Sunday, while Napoli is at Lecce.


Earlier, Palermo beat already relegated Bari 2-1. Also, Siena and Atalanta each clinched promotion back into Serie A; the two clubs are tied for the Serie B lead with a 10-point lead over Novara with three matches remaining.


Siena drew 2-2 with Torino and Atalanta beat Portogruaro 4-1.


A third team will also eventually be promoted from Serie B.


In Rome, the 80,000-seat Stadio Olimpico was filled with 10,000 Milan fans in attendance, and there were some clashes between supporters early in the first half.


Milan midfielder Kevin Prince Boateng wasted a chance created by Clarence Seedorf 10 minutes in, and Roma controlled the match for most of the rest of the first half.


A long-range shot from Roma midfielder Rodrigo Taddei missed wide seconds after Boateng's effort, and Mirko Vucinic then had a close-range effort blocked by Milan goalkeeper Christian Abbiati.


While Roma was dominating the match, its inability to score seemed to make the team grow more nervous.


Roma captain Francesco Totti nearly lost his cool after Mark van Bommel stepped on his heel, then got away with an elbow to Van Bommel's chest 10 minutes later.


Milan took the initiative immediately at the start of the second half, with Robinho's shot hitting the post.


Boateng had another excellent chance for Milan in the 59th but his soft shot went just wide, and Roma goalkeeper Alexander Doni did well to block a free kick from Zlatan Ibrahimovic three minutes later.


Roma's last chance to prevent a Milan celebration came with a free kick from David Pizarro that bounced in front of Abbiati, the Milan goalkeeper doing well to control the ball.


Still, Milan won't get to celebrate before its home fans until hosting Cagliari next Saturday. The club will remain in Rome to train ahead of the second leg in the Italian Cup semifinals at Palermo on Tuesday.


Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.




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