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  • Writer's pictureLazio Stories

What happened in Serie A 2008-09



No real big surprises in Serie A in the 2008-09 season. Inter won relatively comfortably with Juventus not strong enough to challenge. Milan had to fight off Fiorentina and Genoa but managed to keep third place. More was expected from Roma, who had a poor start, and Napoli, who quickly faded away. Lazio were the surprise winners of the Coppa Italia. Not a very good European campaign for the Italian teams, only Udinese put up a fight and reached the quarter finals.


Summer transfers


Champions Inter changed managers from Roberto Mancini to José Mourinho and improved their midfield with the signing of Sulley Muntari. Major transfers were Ronaldinho (Milan), Amauri (Juventus), Alberto Gilardino (Fiorentina), Diego Milito (Genoa), Julio Baptista (Roma) and Mauro Zarate (Lazio). Christian Vieri signed for Atalanta.


Juventus, Milan and Inter were obviously favourites for the title. Roma and Napoli were considered to be a fair distance behind and were supposedly going to fight it out for fourth place.


August & September


Five games to open the season. Lazio started remarkably well and reached the top of the table by the fifth match, ahead of Napoli and another surprise, Catania. The big teams lagged behind. Roma and Napoli drew their encounter in the first match, Milan beat Inter.


In the Champions League group phase, Roma lost their first game at home against Cluj, Inter and Juventus won their tie, Fiorentina drew. In the first leg of the eliminatory UEFA Cup round, Sampdoria, Udinese, Milan and Napoli all won.


In August Inter won the Super Coppa against Roma on penalties. Francesco Totti missed the penalty that could have given the trophy to the Giallorossi.


Lazio 12, Napoli 11, Catania 10, Inter 10, Udinese 10, Atalanta 9, Juventus 9, Milan 9, Palermo 9, Fiorentina 7, Roma 7, Genoa 6, Chievo 5, Lecce 5, Siena 5, Torino 5, Sampdoria 4, Bologna 3, Reggina 1, Cagliari 0


October


Four games. Milan and Inter started to climb the table while Lazio and Catania fell behind. Napoli took the lead beating Juventus while Lazio, and Roma, who collapsed at home against Inter, were well behind. The Bianconeri won the derby.


In CL, Roma beat Bordeaux but lost to Chelsea, Inter were top of their group, Fiorentina had yet to win a game, Juventus beat Real Madrid to top theirs. In the UEFA Cup, Napoli were eliminated by Benfica, the other three went through comfortably. In their first group games, Sampdoria, Udinese and Milan all won.


Napoli 20, Udinese 20, Milan 19, Inter 18, Fiorentina 17, Genoa 16, Lazio 16, Catania 15, Juventus 15, Atalanta 13, Palermo 13, Roma 10, Lecce 10, Siena 9, Torino 8, Sampdoria 7, Cagliari 7, Chievo 6, Bologna 6, Reggina 6


November


Five games were played. The big three moved up and started to dominate Serie A. Inter beat Napoli and Juventus, who in turn beat Roma. The Nerazzurri already had a good lead. The Giallorossi won the derby. Quite a lot of teams were involved in the relegation battle but it was still early stages.


In CL, Roma moved to top of their group and qualified for the next stage, as did Juventus who won in Madrid. The Bianconeri needed just one point to maintain their first place. Inter too were through but needed to win in Bremen to secure first position. Fiorentina on three points had a good chance to qualify for the UEFA Cup but needed to be careful not to lose their last match. In the UC Sampdoria needed to win their last game to continue, Udinese had already qualified top, Milan were second but they had the possibility to go first if they won their last group match.


The big teams also started to play the Coppa Italia. Three games of the round of 16 were played which saw Udinese, Sampdoria and Napoli qualify.


Inter 33, Milan 27, Juventus 27, Napoli 24, Fiorentina 23, Genoa 22, Lazio 23, Catania 22, Udinese 21, Atalanta 20, Palermo 20, Roma 20, Siena 19, Cagliari 17, Sampdoria 16, Lecce 13, Torino 12, Reggina 11, Bologna 10, Chievo 9.


December


Three games before the Christmas holidays. Inter consolidated their lead, Juventus beat Milan and rose to second place. Fiorentina, Napoli and Genoa were now in good positions behind the Rossoneri. Chievo Verona would have to work very hard to avoid relegation.


In CL, Roma, Juventus and Inter qualified for the round of 16. They will play Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United in late February. In the UEFA Cup, Milan, Udinese and Sampdoria moved forward to the round of 32 and were joined by Fiorentina relegated from the CL. They will play Werder Bremen, Lech Pozan, Metalist Kharkiv and Ajax in February.


Another three games of the Coppa Italia round of 16 ties were played. Roma went through, Torino upset Fiorentina and Lazio beat Milan away in extra time.


Inter 42, Juventus 36, Milan 33, Fiorentina 32, Napoli 30, Genoa 29, Lazio 27, Roma 26, Catania 25, Atalanta 24, Palermo 23, Udinese 22, Cagliari 21, Siena 19, Sampdoria 19, Torino 15, Bologna 15, Lecce 14, Reggina 13, Chievo 9.


January


Four games to start the year. Milan left a few teams behind them. Roma-Milan and Lazio-Juve ended in draws. In the lower part Chievo improved and closed the gap.


In the final two games of the round of 16 Coppa Italia ties, Inter and Juventus went through. Three quarter finals were then played: Sampdoria beat Udinese on penalties, Lazio thrashed Torino and Inter beat Roma.


Inter 49, Juventus 43, Milan 41, Genoa 37, Roma 36, Fiorentina 35, Napoli 33, Palermo 32, Lazio 31, Cagliari 31, Atalanta 27, Catania 26, Udinese 26, Siena 25, Sampdoria 23, Bologna 22, Lecce 19, Torino 17, Chievo 17, Reggina 14.


February


Four games. Inter won the derby and now only a collapse could lose them the title. Milan beat Lazio in Rome.


In CL Roma and Juventus lost 1-0 and Inter drew 0-0. It was not going to be easy to go through to the next round. In the UEFA Cup, Udinese were the only Italian team to move on to the round of 16.


In the last Coppa Italia quarter final, Juventus beat Napoli on penalties. The two semi finals will be Lazio-Juventus and Sampdoria-Inter.


Inter 59, Juventus 50, Milan 48, Fiorentina 45, Genoa 44, Roma 43, Cagliari 37, Palermo 36, Atalanta 36, Napoli 35, Lazio 35, Udinese 31, Catania 30, Sampdoria 29, Siena 27, Bologna 23, Torino 23, Lecce 22, Chievo 20, Reggina 17.


March


Another four games. Juventus beat both Napoli and Roma and consolidated their second place. Genoa moved into fourth position. At the bottom Torino, Lecce and Reggina were struggling but there was still time to salvage the situation.


All three Italian teams were eliminated in the CL. Roma were unlucky and lost to Arsenal on penalties. Udinese qualified for the quarterfinals of the UEFA Cup eliminating Zenit St. Petersburg.


The first leg of the Coppa Italia semi finals were played and with surprising results. Lazio, coming from behind, beat Juventus 2-1 at home, Sampdoria thrashed Inter at home 3-0.


Inter 69, Juventus 62, Milan 55, Genoa 51, Fiorentina 49, Roma 46, Cagliari 42, Palermo 42, Lazio 41, Atalanta 40, Napoli 37, Catania 37, Udinese 36, Sampdoria 36, Siena 31, Chievo 30, Bologna 26, Torino 24, Lecce 24, Reggina 20.


April


Four games. Bad month for Juventus, overtaken by Milan. Fiorentina and Genoa were battling for fourth place. Lazio won the derby. In the relegation battle, Torino overtook Bologna while Reggina looked doomed.


In the UEFA Cup quarterfinal, Udinese lost to Werder Bremen.


Two surprise finalists in Coppa Italia. Lazio won in Turin too and Sampdoria limited Inter, so the two underdogs will meet in the final in Rome.


Inter 74, Milan 67, Juventus 65, Fiorentina 58, Genoa 57, Roma 52, Cagliari 49, Palermo 49, Lazio 47, Udinese 45, Atalanta 44, Napoli 42, Sampdoria 41, Catania 40, Siena 37, Chievo 34, Torino 30, Bologna 29, Lecce 27, Reggina 24.


May


Last 5 games but no surprises at the top. Inter won the scudetto and will play next season’s Champions League together with Juventus, Milan and Fiorentina. Genoa and Roma in Europa League, the new name for the UEFA Cup. They were joined by Lazio who beat Sampdoria in a penalty shootout (the 120 minutes had ended 1-1) in the Coppa Italia final.


The relegation battle was resolved in the last game. Reggina and Lecce were already in Serie B and the last place was between Bologna and Torino who were tied on 34 points, the Rossoblu with the advantage of having beaten the Granata at home and drawn away. Bologna beat Catania and stayed in Serie A.


Zlatan Ibrahimovic was top Serie A scorer with 25 goals, one more than Marco Di Vaio and Diego Milito.


Bari, Parma and Livorno were promoted from Serie B.


Final table: Inter 84, Juventus 74, Milan 74, Fiorentina 68, Genoa 68, Roma 63, Udinese 58, Palermo 57, Cagliari 53, Lazio 50, Atalanta 47, Napoli 46, Sampdoria 46, Siena 44, Catania 43, Chievo 38, Bologna 37, Torino 34, Reggina 31, Lecce 30.

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