Balotelli stars in Milan's win over Cagliari

Rome, Sep 2 (IANS) Mario Balotelli inspired AC Milan to beat a spirited Cagliari side 3-1 while Inter, Fiorentina and Roma all triumphed in the Italian Serie A.

Milan got off to a flying start Sunday when Robinho tapped home in the eighth minute after a Balotelli cross from right that skimmed past the watching Cagliari defence. Balotelli's ball bobbled its way to the Brazilian at the back post and he made no mistake, reports Xinhua.

The hosts went two up after 30 minutes thanks to the unlikely figure of Mexes, who surged from defence to volley home from close range after Balotelli again had been the central figure in the build-up.

Cagliari fought back almost straight away with a fine finish from Sau to keep the game alive.

Just after the hour mark, Balotelli finally got himself on the scoresheet. A deep Abate cross was weakly headed away by centre-half Lorenzo Ariaudo and the ball fell at Balotelli's feet. The striker lashed it into the net to restore Milan's two-goal advantage.

Milan head coach Massimiliano Allegri was happy with his side's performance despite conceding a goal.

"I liked the approach to this game, as we attacked and defended well. It was an important victory, even if we allowed Cagliari a little too much of the ball," he said.

"We made some mistakes and have already conceded entirely avoidable goals so far this season. In any case, the week went well with Champions League qualification and this victory," he said.

Unlike Milan who took one win from two Serie A games played, Roma, Inter and Fiorentina all maintained their 100 percent win records and sit on six points from two games.

Roma took part in the early afternoon game and saw off Verona with relative ease after goals from Fabrizio Cacciatore (own goal), Miralem Pjanic and Adem Ljajic handed them a 3-0 win.

Inter also cruised to a comfortable 3-0 win over Catania thanks to a first half goal from Rodrigo Palacio and two second half goals from Yuto Nagatomo and Ricky Alvarez.

Fiorentina took part in one of the games of the evening with a thrilling 5-2 win over Genoa. Guiseppe Rossi and Mario Gomez both scored twice, to add to Alberto Aquilani's opener for Fiorentina while Alberto Gilardino and Francesco Lodi scored the consolation goals for Genoa.


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